HEALING, MSD STRONG, NEWS — March 22, 2020 at 8:20 pm

Parkland community gathers for 3rd annual Run 4 Beigel 5K

Math teacher Cindi Helverson honors the life of former MSD social studies teacher Scott Beigel at the third annual Run 4 Beigel 5K race on Saturday, Feb. 1. The race was held at Pine Trails Park in Parkland, Florida. Photo by Darian Williams

On Saturday, Feb. 1, the third annual Run 4 Beigel 5K race was held at Pine Trails Park at 8 a.m. Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School seniors Monique Miquel and Annagrace Myers coordinated the event with the help of the cross country team and the Beigel family. The run was created in 2018 by the team after the tragic loss of their coach, Scott J. Beigel, in the shooting at MSD. 

“My cross country team felt broken after the loss of our coach, Scott Beigel. Even though we only knew him for a few months, he left us with so many amazing life lessons and his unparalleled sense of humor always brightened up our day,” Miquel said. 

The goal of the Scott J. Beigel Memorial Fund is to send underprivileged children affected by gun violence to summer camp.

“Summer camp was Scott Beigel’s favorite place in the world, and he even became a teacher so that he could spend his summers as a counselor at Camp Starlight,” Miquel said. “Allowing these children to attend camp gives them the opportunity to avoid violence and negative influences and replace it with happy memories and important life lessons.” 

 The team was looking forward to making the event more successful than last year’s. They set a goal to try and surpass the number of participants and raise more money for the foundation.

“This year we just want the event to be successful and for people to have fun. We want to raise as much money as we can so we can send unprivileged children affected by gun violence to camp,” sophomore Devyn Sanders said.

This year, 522 participants ran in the race. Breakfast including bagels and fruits were provided by the team for the runners and staff members once they completed the run.

“As a runner, I find it very considerate that they put out food for everyone, especially with long races such as the 5K,” participant Denise Harrison said. 

After the run, there were tents of sponsors, including One to One Fitness, Bolay, 3 Heart Strings, Runner’s Depot and OrangeTheory Fitness. The sponsors handed out flyers, pamphlets and small giveaways while Bolay handed out food samples. 3 Heart Strings also sold bracelets and donated to the memorial fund. 

There was also an award ceremony held after the race where 96 participants received awards, which were given out in 14 different age categories.   

By the end of the run, the Run 4 Beigel Foundation raised about $20,000, surpassing its original goal of $15,000. This even exceeded their earnings from last year’s run, which was $14,537.

“It felt so surreal. Of course, being in charge of a race is very hectic, so [Annagrace Myers and I] were running around like crazy the whole time making sure everything was accounted for, but in the moments when we got a few seconds to stop and just see all of our participants having fun and enjoying the race, it made us beyond happy,” Miquel said.

This story was originally published in the March 2020 Eagle Eye print edition.

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Erika Ryan is a junior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. She enjoys drawing, painting and reading.

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