Posted: Friday, June 29, 2001

Many thanks to everyone who made fun run such a community success

I am writing to thank all the volunteers and fun-runners who made the Seventh Annual Jeff Ransom Memorial Fun Run last Saturday such a grand success.

A big thank you to Mary Toll and Geri, Ben and Maddy Ransom for setting up the day's events in the early morning hours; to Krys Williams and Linda McLane for streamlined registration; to Catherine Cassidy and Kathy Holt for T-shirt coordination and sales; to water station and "first aid" attendants Connie Woolfolk and Brother Billy; to timers Sarah Garrant, Bob and Liz Correia, Alan Boraas, Mark Burgener and Joanne Wainwright.

Special thanks also to master chefs Mary Toll and Geri Ransom; to Master of Ceremonies Clancy Skipwith and his awards assistants Danny Meyer, Ben and Maddy Ransom; to all those thoughtful folks who brought delicious dishes and desserts for the runners and winners; and to our awesome musicians, Melissa Blake, Ellen Holt, Taryn Bossert and Katy Stetz!

Much appreciation goes to our sponsors: Mark Burgener of Burgener Designs for another great batch of T-shirts; John and Suzie Cook of the Tustumena Lodge for tables and ice; Ranger Jacqui Erion and the Alaska State Parks Office for the beautiful campsite donation; the folks at Mail Boxes, Etc., and Jersey Subs; the Peninsula Clarion for help in spreading the word; Inlet Salmon for ice and totes; Eric Williams for ice pick up and Connie Woolfolk for remote power generation!

Most of all, I wish to thank Geri, Ben and Maddy Ransom for giving so much of their time, energy and spirit to the annual fun run, their designation of proceeds to the Alaska Mountain Safety Center, and for keeping the sun shining high in the sky!

A million thank yous and congratulations to all the runners, bikers, walkers, strollers and crawlers, to the girls and boys and moms and dads and neighbors and friends who made their way over to the grueling 5-kilometer course and crossed the finish line in style and smiles. See you all next year for the Eighth Annual!

Mike Morgan, Kasilof

Effort transforms weeded lot into fertile garden site, potato patch

What a difference a day makes!

On June 6, volunteers from BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. and BP employees and retirees from Australia, Belgium, Colombia and locations throughout the United States took part in the BP Classic 2001 Volunteer Day.

Refurbishing and planting the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank's Soup Kitchen Garden was one of four community service projects selected to be done in Alaska by BP volunteers and their local business partners. How honored we are!

In one day, more than 75 volunteers from the Kenai Peninsula and around the world transformed a weeded lot into a fertile garden site that will soon provide fresh vegetables to the needy members of our community. A 40-foot-by-100-foot potato patch and a 50-foot-by-50-foot soup kitchen garden were planted. Eight 4-foot-by-16-foot raised beds were built, the raspberry bushes caned, and the rhubarb and strawberry beds refurbished. Volunteers even built a small greenhouse! Designed for minimal maintenance and optimum beauty, our garden area is complete with a logo gate and a grassy area that will have a picnic table and flowers in it next year.

The Kenai Peninsula Soup Kitchen Garden would not have been possible without the generous assistance from the local BP partners and other caring members of our community. Dick Baldwin, Seeds of Alaska; Paul Mettille and Paula Lovett, Peak Oilfield Service Company; Barbara and Jim Udelhoven, Udelhoven Oil Field System Services Inc.; and the Peninsula Clarion all played major roles in the Food Bank's Soup Kitchen Garden Restoration project.

The Funny River Ladies spent two days preparing a great Alaska meal. Businesses and individuals generously donated their time and talents. Topsoil, peat, vegetables, herbs, strawberries, fertilizer, lime, gardening materials and tools were provided. The food bank even received a garden tiller, a lawnmower and two wheelbarrows!

It is truly a privilege to be part of a community where neighbors are always willing to help the less fortunate! The Kenai Peninsula Food Bank's board of directors and staff join me in a heartfelt thanks to BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc., their business partners and all the wonderful volunteers who made such a difference in just one day.

Because no one deserves to be hungry,

Pat Vincent, Program director Kenai Peninsula Food Bank

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