“Hurry, hurry!” His fingers gripped the metal basket as he tried to keep his balance. A huge grin appeared on his face as the Special Olympics North Carolina athlete seated in a grocery cart saw the finish line. His partner a Cherry Point Air Station Marine also smiling pushed the cart as fast as he could. The grocery cart races are a favorite event in the annual Procter & Gamble Fun Day at the Cherry Point Marine Corps Air Station commissary each January.
For more than 35 years, Procter & Gamble has partnered to raise funds in support of Special Olympics. P&G sponsors a contest in January among military commissaries around the world geared toward increasing the sales of P&G products. For the past five years the Cherry Point commissary has won a regional award and extra funds for Special Olympics. Each year the P&G Fun Day event has gotten bigger and better and 2013 would be no exception.
Thirty Special Olympics NC athletes were in attendance from Craven, Wayne, Onslow and Guilford counties. The day started with cheers and applause as the Special Olympics athletes were welcomed to base. A magician got the fun going and then the athletes teamed up with the Marines. The teams competed against each other in games such as the shopping cart race, face to the cookie, the Oreo pie-eating contest and the ever favorite turkey bowling. Great prizes were awarded such Ipod’s, Xbox 360’s, clothing and sporting equipment. Every athlete took home a prize!
“Each year I look forward to hosting this event,” said Phyllis Black, commissary manager. “The athletes are so inspiring and to see them interact and bond with the Marines is truly wonderful. I’m so proud to know these athletes and support them in this way.”
The Commissary staff hosted a lunch for everyone and donations were collected with more than $300 being raised for Special Olympics. The event was a huge success witnessed by all the smiles and laughter that filled the tents where lunch was served. Many P&G and Acosta Sales & Marketing representatives were in attendance to observe the event. Mr. Don Irvin of Procter & Gamble really got the crowd kept the energy up when he provided some entertainment for the group by playing his guitar and belting out some classic rock & roll tunes.
A fun day was had by all and as things were winding down Phyllis Black invited everyone back next year when she and her commissary staff will try go even bigger!