Community Runs for Cerebral Palsy


Participants begin the marathon on Lake Mary Prep’s track.

Kaylyn Phung

On October 31, Lake Mary Prep hosted Lake Scary 5K, an event to help generate funds for Universal Cerebral Palsy of Central Florida, on Halloween. As usual, the amount of money raised was fully donated to UCP to benefit disabled children by providing services and therapy improvements.

This year,Senior Isabelle Daoust continues to take her lead in organizing the charity fundraiser. Daoust attempted to seek more safety measures due to Covid-19 to ensure social-distancing was followed throughout the whole race.

“This year, it was challenging to secure sponsorships since many of our supporters are typically small businesses and their budgets were much tighter. We’re still really proud of the work we did and the money we were able to raise.” Daoust said.

As a run-from-home option was added to the event due to the pandemic, an exceeding number of participants were seen on fields and through Zoom. The marathon brought positive spirits to the community in a time of hardship. Thanks to positive responses from people around the area to the event, LMP successfully raised approximately $10,000 for children with cerebral palsy.

“[The number of participants] was a lot more than expected, we started a virtual run option this year, and we only had approximately 15 out of our 156 runners take it. We had about the same amount of racers as last year as well, and it was an excellent opportunity for the community to get together safely to support a great cause.” Daoust said. 

LMP’s art teacher, Ms. Traci Reitz, was the faculty sponsor of Lake Scary 5K. Ms. Reitz has close ties to the marathon because she herself has battled cerebral palsy. Reitz has been volunteering in Lake Scary 5K for more than five years to support and foster kids with the disorder to reach their full potential.

“This year, I am actually surprised at the amount we were able to raise because it was 100% student-led. So, having students able to raise a substantial amount of money and organize something complex, as the race is, it’s pretty extraordinary,” said Reitz.

One of the students running in the race, Sophomore Katie Amitrone, expressed her gratefulness to be in an activity for such a good cause.

“I had a great experience during the Lake Scary 5K. I think Isabelle Daoust and the rest of the club did an amazing job of putting it all together, especially for a good cause that should be recognized more,” said Amitrone.