HOUSTON – These kids rode around and around and around and around and around the parking lot and they raised over $6,000 to help kids just like them.
Houston First Baptist Church hosted its annual St. Jude Trike-A-Thon Wednesday morning with 63 kids peddling laps on the parking lot on bicycles, tricycles, Big-Wheels and scooters.
“We’ve been doing this every fall for a number of years,” said Margaret Hollingsworth, director of Houston First Baptist Church Kindergarten. “This is always a lot of fun for both the kids and parents and grandparents.”
Hollingsworth said the goal this year was $6,000 and when all the counting and peddling was finished, $6,053.65 had been raised.
“The money goes to a very good cause, but this also teaches our kids about giving back and helping others,” said Hollingsworth. “We have children in this community and in our child care who have benefited so much from the care they received at St. Jude.”
She said teaching kids about how to respond when someone gets sick is important.
“Kids understand more than we realize,” she explained. “Our teachers talk to the kids about that during the week. Then we decorate our bikes, invite our parents and grandparents and make a morning of it.”
The fall event also takes the place of Halloween at FBC.
Kids dress up in their t-shirts, there is candy and the class that raises the most money gets a pizza party.
“We also have ring toss, magnetic fishing booths, bean-bag toss and face painting,” said Hollingsworth. “We have a lot of volunteers who work hard to make this happen and our church staff also supports this.”
Houston Police Chief Billy Voyles is invited every year to direct traffic.
“Yes, there are usually a few crashes and a few bumps and scrapes,” said Hollingsworth. “But we always have a good time and we think it does make a difference in the world.”
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is internationally recognized for its pioneering research and treatment of children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases. Ranked one of the best pediatric cancer hospitals in the country, St. Jude is the first and only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center devoted solely to children.
Consistent with the vision of its founder Danny Thomas, no child is denied treatment based on race, religion or a family’s ability to pay.