Submitted by St. Charles Drill Team
The St. Charles North and St. Charles East Drill Teams united June 21 at their annual Kick-A-Thon kickoff event, held in conjunction with Relay For Life. Due to the weather, the venue was moved from the Fifth Third Ballpark to the St. Charles East Main Commons, where members of the community spoke about the importance of the Kick-A-Thon.
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This is an annual event where the drill teams raise money in order to put an end to cancer. Each drill team member is paired up with a member of the St. Charles community, and together they raise money for the American Cancer Society and the LivingWell Cancer Resource Center.
On the night of the Kick-A-Thon, the drill team members and the community representatives form a kick line and do 100 kicks to "kick cancer." In the past 19 years, the drill teams have been able to donate over $678,029 to the American Cancer Society and LivingWell Center in Geneva through this fundraiser. The kickoff event helps to inspire the drill teams and their families.
This year's speakers included Diana Artman, Kick-A-Thon co-chairwoman; Charlie Kyle, St. Charles East principal and 13-year kicker; St. Charles Mayor Ray Rogina; Kari Batka, director of Kick-A-Thon Advisory Board; Lori Drumtra; coaches Nancy Prentiss of St. Charles North and Hanna Byington of St. Charles East Drill Teams; and alumni Nora Byington and Nicole Drews. Each of these speakers have been personally affected by cancer and shared their stories of hope made possible through the funds raised by Kick-A-Thon.
Checks were presented to Keri Nelson, regional director of income development at the American Cancer Society, as well as Nancy Vance, executive director of LivingWell Cancer Resource Center. Each accepted a check for more than $40,000.
While the St. Charles drill teams are proud of their $80,000 donation, they hope to raise even more this year at the 20th annual Kick-A-Thon. Join the drill teams on Friday, Sept. 13, at the St. Charles East Stadium between the sophomore and varsity football games to support the community and help in the fight against cancer. For information or to donate, visit www.kick-a-thon.org.