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Barbecuing for the MSC Trail Walk and Run

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It was a cloudy Thursday morning for Tillsonburg MSC Trail Walk and Run's community barbecue at the Multi-Service Centre.

But they were optimistic the weather would soon improve.

"It's going to be sunny in... 12 minutes," predicted Catherine Burton, coordinator of Programs and Services for Parkinson Society of Southwestern Ontario.

The same could not be said on the cold and windy morning of Sunday, May 31st when the 'sideways' rain was coming down hard, effectively cancelling the 2015 Tillsonburg MSC Trail Walk and Run.

"If it had just rained, and it had been a decent temperature, the event would have carried on," said Angela Newson, Chair of the Trail Walk and Run Committee.

"We had not planned for a rain date because events like that usually carry on in the rain. But it was severe weather. It was so cold and so windy – it was 5 degrees (C) and high winds. So we made the hard decision... and decided to cancel. In retrospect, next year, we will have a severe weather alternate plan."

A family-oriented event, many of the participants would have been children.

On the bright side, the event raised more than $6,000 for the MSC and Parkinson Society of Southwestern Ontario.

"That's $1,000 more than last year," Newson noted. "We are thankful for our local sponsors who donated both in-kind and funds, as well as people who registered. We did have people who pre-registered, and they still got their race T-shirts, plus all the giveaways, information and coupons in their kit bags. They were so pleased to get that."

"Very grateful for their fundraising and the effort they put into it," Burton nodded.

Thursday's barbecue was rescheduled from May 30th.

"We usually have a barbecue with the event and sponsors – Sobeys gave us hamburgers, hot dogs and pop – so we still wanted to have the barbecue for the community."

They didn't have a rain date for Thursday's barbecue either, but Newson was confident the weather would clear up.

"I think it's going to be fine," she smiled.

The date for the 5th annual MSC Trail Walk and Run has already been set for May 30, 2016. There will also be a backup date... just in case.

"We have a lot of special ideas for the 5th annual event," said Newson.

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