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James Clemens FCCLA helps Urban Iditarod

Raising funds for the Downtown Rescue Mission, the Urban Ditarod included students in Family Career Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) from James Clemens High School. CONTRIBUTED
Raising funds for the Downtown Rescue Mission, the Urban Ditarod included students in Family Career Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) from James Clemens High School. CONTRIBUTED

MADISON – Mush! The Urban Iditarod that benefited the Downtown Rescue Mission included students in Family Career Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) from James Clemens High School.

The Huntsville event in February paid tribute to the annual Iditarod sled dog race from Anchorage to Nome, Alaska.

James Clemens students who entered the 5K walk/run were Nicole Bierbauer, Hannah Courtney, Grace Loggins, Ava Mullin, Becca Paschall and Brooke Sinyard.

“The mission’s 2016 Urban Iditarod was a great success,” Tonia Beverly said. Beverly serves as the mission’s Director of Events and Business Partnerships. “Seventeen teams of teams of six heavily-costumed humanoids raised food and funds for the purpose of changing lives of the homeless and hurting in Huntsville.”

The participants raced with “tricked-out shopping carts through the frigid streets of downtown Huntsville,” Beverly said. The teams collected food weighing 3,600-plus pounds, collected more than $10,000 and brought in barrels and barrels of donated clothing.

James Clemens FCCLA Club sponsored a soup and dessert fundraiser for faculty and staff during the school’s Refuel hour.

“My students also conducted a canned food drive. During the race, we collected gently used clothing items,” Sherri Shamwell said. Shamwell sponsors FCCLA and teaches in the Family and Consumer Sciences Department.

Because James Clemens uses “the Jets” as its mascot, the theme for the FCCLA team was “First Ladies in Flight.” “One of my students, Naylor Mayfield, was kind enough to make our ‘Jet,'” Shamwell said.

“Each team had to have a decorated shopping cart for the 5K race. Ours was a jet,” Shamwell said. Hancock Fabrics on University Drive loaned the cart.

Each of the six team members had to touch or be ‘attached’ to the grocery cart in some way. “We didn’t win any of the prizes, but we had fun and the club members are ready to do it again next year,” Shamwell said.

Registration already is open for the 2017 Downtown Rescue Mission Urban Iditarod. For more information, call 256-713-4343, email tonia.beverly@downtownrescuemission.org or visit downtownrescuemission.org.

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