Chester All-Star Track Meet 6/2/12

Stephanie Aldrich and Natalie Deacon, two Henderson High School juniors, created the Chester All-Star Track Meet as their senior project and invited all Chester 4th and 5th graders to attend.  The Meet, which highlighted various track and field events, was held at Widener University Quick Stadium on Saturday, June 2nd, and included almost 100 Chester children.  The Chester “All-Stars” were each assigned a Chester County high school track/cross country athlete as their “Coach” for the day.  Participating high schools were:  Henderson, Rustin, WC East, Downingtown East and Great Valley.  Their jobs were to encourage their All-Stars, get them to their events and to share their love of Track and Field.  They did a fantastic job!

Although the effort was a huge effort from both girls, we saw the Lord orchestrating the entire event from the very beginning.  He brought us support from physical education teachers in Chester (Dan Rooney and Mike Wooters), and expert knowledge and hospitality from Widener University’s Women’s Track Coach (Kevin Cunningham), Men’s Soccer Coach (Brent Jacquette) and Athletic Director (Jack Shafer).  Feeding the group of 375 people would have been impossible without the delicious, nutritious lunch provided by Aramark.

In addition, the Lord overwhelmed us with gracious support from In Ian’s Boots ( who provided each child with a pair of sneakers and socks (The Joy of Sox) as well as nutritious snacks and new shoelaces from The Running Place in Newtown Square.  The William Trippley Youth Development Foundation came alongside us as they do so often to provide bananas and soft pretzels as well as financial support.  WaWa supplied all of the drinks for the day for everyone!

The children had a wonderful experience together as they ran the 800m, 100 yard dash, 4x100m relays, and also took the opportunity to do the standing long jump, accuracy throw and the distance throw.  We played earth ball together and even finished the day with a “dance off” in the center of the field.  The “Coaches” and”All-Stars” were high-fiving each other and giving piggy back rides through out the day and really enjoyed the simplicity of each other’s company.  We were thrilled to see this tremendous dream of these two girls become a reality with the Lord’s power.

One other note is that it did not escape our notice that five young men who now live in Heaven had those that they loved serving at this event.  In appreciation for their lives, the Chester All-Star Track Meet was dedicated to Will Trippley (whose mom and best friend supported the event through the Will Trippley Youth Development Foundation), Christopher Richard (whose dad ran the events on the field), Ian Miller (whose parents gave away the sneakers), Andrew L. Hicks, Jr., and Cameron Evans (who had his Homegoing earlier in the week and whose sisters run for Downingtown West).  Downingtown West had to drop out of the Meet to attend Cameron’s Memorial Service but they were in our prayers all day.

“I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to us has actually served to advance the gospel.  As a result, it has become clear…that we have suffered for Christ.  And because of our suffering, many are strong in the faith now and have been encouraged to speak the Word of God more courageously and fearlessly.”  paraphrased from Philippians 1:12-14

Special Thanks:

Widener University
The William Trippley Youth Development Foundation
Cathy McGinley, West Chester Area School District
Brent Jacquette, Widener University Men’s Soccer
Kevin Cunningham, Widener University Women’s Track
Dan Rooney, Chester Community Charter School
Mike Wooters, Widener Partnership Charter School
The William Trippley Youth Development Foundation
Larry Yarbray, Chester Boys and Girls Club
Dave Richard, Henderson High School Girls’ Sprint Coach
In Ian’s Boots
The Running Place, Newtown Square, PA
Tuttle Marketing Services

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