Wichita residents dash to raise funds

By Matthew Royal, staff writer

Newman University and the city of Wichita showed their support for good cause this summer, as the introduction of the new event ‘Gladiator Dash’ exceeded expectations, said Vic Trilli.

The event was a 5K race and had roughly 10 obstacles throughout the course. Participants found themselves trudging through water, climbing up on hay bales, and fighting to get to the finish while encountering many other obstacles.

Photo Courtesy of Newman University
Participants in the Wichita Gladiator Dash wait in line to register for the 5K run at Sedgwick County Park.

The first dash, put together by Dan Giroux, Newman Athletic Club president, and Zack Steven, Newman alumn, was an idea that was well received in the community they said.

The event held on June 9, 2012 received almost four times the number of expected participants.

“We were hoping to bring in about 300 participants for our first event, but after we got the word out, that number grew to nearly 1200 participants. This was off the chart when considering my expectations. For the next NU Wichita Gladiator Dash … wow … it’s reasonable to expect 2,500 to 3,000 registrations, based on the interest of the event and the turnout from year one. This is really a fun event,” Newman University Athletic Director Vic Trilli responded.

The event was sponsored by 22 different businesses, including Miller Lite and Red Bull.

Due to the high number of participants in the Gladiator Dash, Newman University Athletic Club was able to present the Child’s Advocacy Center of Sedgwick County with a check in the amount of $5,273.50.

The Child’s Advocacy Center provides a service to children of Sedgwick County and often surrounding areas, supporting kids dealing with physical, sexual, and internet abuse as well as child trafficking.

The support, however, does not stop there. The Child’s Advocacy Center also aims to provide parents with information on how to recognize abuse while working toward its main goals: to help end problems while also providing solutions for the future.

“With 4,000 cases a year, this money goes directly towards helping these children, and we thank Newman for the efforts and for thinking of us whilst creating the Gladiator Dash,” Dianna Schunn, Executive Director of the Child Advocacy Center, said.

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