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Fundraiser Generates $5,000 for Friends of Pelham Sports

PELHAM, N.Y. – The Symmetry Sunset Sprints fundraiser to benefit the Friends of Pelham Sports raised more than $5,000, according to Chris Lauretani, event organizer and president of Symmetry Physical Therapy.

More than 140 people ages four to 40-plus participated in a series of races at Glover Field on Friday. The money raised came from the registration fees, raffle donations and contributions from corporate sponsors.

The raffles, which included an iPad and Yankees and Jets tickets, accounted for $1,500 of the total. Some corporate sponsors contributed money, some sent relay teams to race and some offered both.

Lauretani planned the event in five weeks and scheduled everything about five weeks before the event, as he had some logistical issues securing the field.

“Being the first year (of the event), I was pretty happy with the way things turned out with limited time,” Lauretani said.

Even with other events in Pelham on Friday, Lauretani was pleased with the turnout. The participants were mostly from the Pelham area and included Pelham Memorial High School football, lacrosse and soccer players. The children’s races were sprints and the adults’ races were one mile events. The races were divided according to age.

One popular race was the police vs. fire relay race. The Pelham Fire Department won bragging rights by coming in first, with the Pelham Police Department in second and the Pelham Manor Fire Department in third. The departments also donated money to the fund-raiser.

The White Plains Rugby Club, which Lauretani’s company sponsors, won the corporate relay.

Excellent weather graced the event and local student Owen Saunders acted as DJ for the afternoon. Lauretani received positive feedback throughout the afternoon from those who attended.

“It was definitely like a family atmosphere, especially when the kids were running,” Lauretani said.

Lauretani said he would like to organize the event once a year and tweak it somewhat by adding new events. He considered a relay race that would pit the various high school sports teams against each other and also thought about adding new awards for the participants.

He said he is "on the fence" about expanding the event and bringing in outside organizations to add prize money.

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