Louisiana Skeeter Run
SWAT Teams stomping out Malaria!
TO REGISTER FOR THE 2013 SKEETER RUN, PLEASE GO TO WWW.LOUISIANASKEETERRUN.ORG. THANKS!
On April 21, 2012, more than 2000 people all over Louisiana gathered for either a One Mile Run/Walk or a 5K Run/Walk to help stomp out malaria.
A BIG THANK YOU goes out to all participants, volunteers, race directors and anyone else who helped with or donated to this amazing cause in any way! See the new Photo Gallery on the right for pics from the day!
If you didn't catch us this year (or even if you did!)...we hope to see you in 2013!
All proceeds went to benefit Imagine No Malaria.
Sponsored by your local United Methodist Churches.
United Methodist Communications is a proud sponsor of this event, and other Impact Community events across the globe. As the lead communications agency of the United Methodist Church, United Methodist Communications informs, inspires, and engages the people of the United Methodist Church and the world.
Below are United Methodist Churches or agencies/colleges that are hosting and/or sponsoring the Louisiana Skeeter Runs:
Asbury UMC/West Monroe
Asbury-St. Matthew/New Orleans
Bear Creek Congregation UMC
Christ Fellowship UMC
Darlington UMC, 225-405-4257
East Bayou UMC
Hope Community UMC/Baton Rouge
Huff Chapel UMC/Springfield
LaTech - Wesley Foundation/Ruston
LSU - Wesley Foundation/Baton Rouge
Moss Bluff UMC/Lake Charles
Mount Zion UMC/New Orleans
St. Charles UMC
St. James UMC/New Iberia
St. Mark UMC/Opelousas
St. Paul's UMC/Hareahan
ULL - Wesley United Campus Ministry/Lafayette
Vinton Welsh Memorial UMC/Vinton
Warren UMC/Lake Charles
The Louisiana Annual Conference is composed of over 500 United Methodist Churches in the state of Louisiana. Those churches are divided into seven geographical districts. Our conference is led by Bishop William Hutchinson.
The first Methodist circuit riders made their way into Louisiana before it even became a state. The first Methodist society was established in 1806. Since then, the conference has gone through a number of changes, divisions, and mergers. Through it all, we have never lost site of the fact that we are here to make disciples of Christ. Through our missions, ministries, and people we continue to serve and share the Gospel message to fulfill the Great Commission.
More information on The United Methodist Church, our ministries, and our mission can be found at this website. Take a minute to look through the latest issue of our conference newspaper (the Louisiana Now!) to see what is going on this month
Every 60 seconds, malaria claims a life in Africa. Millions of lives, needlessly lost each year. A continent. Entire nations…slipping away. Slipping through life’s precious net. Unless you hear the buzzing inside you.
Imagine No Malaria is an extraordinary effort of the people of The United Methodist Church, putting our faith into action to end preventable deaths by malaria in Africa, especially the death of a child or a mother.
Achieving this goal requires an integrated strategy against the disease. As a life-saving ministry, Imagine No Malaria aims to empower the people of Africa to overcome malaria’s burden. We fight malaria with a comprehensive model.
Imagine No Malaria is more than just a campaign against a disease that kills children and destroys families. It’s a movement, to make real change in the world.
Join us as we work with families in Africa to end millions of needless deaths from this disease.
Race Route for Alexandria Skeeter SWAT Teams
Starting point: First UMC Alexandria at 2727 Jackson St.
Race Route for Lafayette Skeeter SWAT Teams
Starting point: Asbury UMC at 101 Live Oak Drive
Race Route for Ruston Skeeter SWAT Teams
Starting Point: Trinity UMC at 1000 Woodward Avenue
Race Route for Sulphur Skeeter SWAT Teams
Starting point: The Sulphur Pavillion, 1015 Ruth Street
Race Route for Thibodaux Skeeter SWAT Teams
Starting Point: Guidry Stadium parking lots at Nicholl's University
Routes will be added to this page as they become available.
Despite chilly temperatures and the threat of rain, more than 2,000 participated in the first annual Louisiana Skeeter Run in the early morning of April 21.
Held in eight cities throughout Louisiana, United Methodists and community members walked and ran to raise funds and awareness for Imagine No Malaria, an initiative of The United Methodist Church.
Held as a Change the World event and sponsored by the Louisiana Annual Conference, the Louisiana Skeeter Run was organized by the Global Health Initiative of the conference.
“As United Methodists, we put feet to our faith. The Louisiana Skeeter Run is a great example of who we are. Each one of our volunteers played a key part in sharing the story for Imagine No Malaria,” said Margaret Johnson, chair for the conference initiative and Skeeter Run director.
Participant Stephani Rogers wrote, “Just wanted to thank you for an awesome run! I decided at the last minute to run the 5K. I loved the people along the way cheering us on and the friendliness of everyone! I do not go to church there (a United Methodist church) and I felt so amazingly welcome! I will run again next year for sure!”
The inclement weather the morning of the run caused a few nervous moments for race directors at the majority of the eight sites.
Rev. Jon Lord, race committee member, recalls events leading up to the start of the New Orleans Skeeter Run.
“Even at 6:30 a.m., the sky was still cloudy with lightning showing to the southwest. We were held up getting into the Riverview Park by a stopped public belt train. But this was God's event, because the rain held off and we started on time,” he said.
Across the state, Rev. Lord’s son Ryan ran in the Ruston Skeeter Run. The junior Lord, who won his age group, is a malaria survivor.
“Ryan contracted malaria when we lived in Tanzania,” said Rev. Lord, who served as a missionary in Africa. “A reporter from KNOE-TV in Monroe interviewed Ryan after the race as a malaria survivor. The young newsman didn't know that malaria is a disease or how it is contracted. I was struck by the great need for elevating awareness of the disease in the United States.”
The Baton Rouge Skeeter Run boasted the largest number of supporters with 464 volunteers, walkers and runners. Steve Backstrom, who helped to direct runners midway through the route, was surprised to receive a donation for Imagine No Malaria from a passer by. “A man skirting the route in his car rolled down the window and asked me what was going on. I explained the Skeeter Run to him, and shared a little bit of information about the cause. He took out his checkbook and handed me a donation of $50!,” said Backstrom.
The morning after the Skeeter Run, the success of the event was celebrated in churches throughout the Louisiana Conference. Rev. Jeff Duke, pastor of Bayou Blue United Methodist Church in Houma, shared that the acolytes for Sunday morning worship proudly wore their Skeeter Run t-shirts in church. “I thought this was a great followup to the event that we very much enjoyed yesterday,” he said.
Probably speaking for many, on race day, one young woman shared her reason for getting involved: “As Christians, that’s our job! It’s what we’re supposed to do.”
written by Betty Backstrom, Director of Communications, Louisiana Annual Conference