Tomorrow is one of my very, very favorite days on campus: Hit the Bricks. The Events Calendar describes Hit the Bricks as follows:
“Hit the Bricks is a Brian Piccolo Cancer Fund philanthropy now in its 12th year. Relay teams of students, faculty and staff will walk and/or run on the brick pavers around Hearn Plaza to help raise awareness and funds to find a cure for cancer.
Engraved Bricks are awarded to the winning teams for 5 separate divisions. Food, music and games are presented throughout the 8 hours of the event.
All participants who are present at 7 pm will walk a final remembrance lap to honor those family and friends who have fought the good fight against cancer.”
There is a Hit the Bricks website where you can read more about the history of the event, rules and FAQ, etc. But I will give you the scoop here as well.
There are teams of 10 runners, and the goal is to run (or walk) a lap around the Quad. Each runner has a baton that gets scanned at a station once a lap, so there is an autotally of your team’s performance. If you are a hardcore person with a strong back, you can run with a backpack that has (I believe) 15 lbs of sand in it, and you get two scans per lap. (Many of our students have those strong young backs and can run with backpacks. I myself cannot.)
The event starts at 11 am, and throughout the day there are speakers, music, breaks to award prizes, and a big leaderboard that gets updated regularly. There is a lot of genteel competition between the teams. Some are quite competitive – both student teams and faculty/staff teams – and there are some more recreational teams.
One of the great parts is that students come out all day and watch, even if they are not running. Student organizations bring lawn chairs or even sofas out onto the Quad to cheer on their teams. It is an amazing display of school spirit and unity in the fight against cancer.
I can’t think of anyone who has not had a friend, family member, or loved one affected by cancer. This event helps honor those who have the disease, and the money raised goes to cancer research. It’s a win for everyone.
I’d urge you tomorrow to keep the Quad Cam up in a browser window. You won’t be able to see all of the action, but you can get a sense of what it is like. There will be a walking lane and a running lane on the Quad, and at 7 pm there will be a final, silent lap to honor those we have lost to cancer (or who are dealing with the disease right now). Normally after the last lap there are luminaries and a speech on the steps near Wait Chapel. You won’t be able to hear it but you’ll be able to see it.
If your Deacs are running Hit the Bricks, kudos! And if yours are not, urge them to go to the Quad sometime between 11 am-7 pm to soak in part of the camaraderie of the day.
PS – The Daily Deac will be part of the ZSR Library team. I am not a good runner. My mantra is “not fast, but not last.” I’ll never be able to hang with these 18-22 year olds who are in the best shape of their life (or some of our competitive staff/faculty teams of real runners), but I’ll represent just the same. My hope is to be able to do some updates from the Quad when I am not running. If not, a recap the next day.