ST. GEORGE – It was Monday night, 10 p.m. The temperature outside was just under 100 degrees and it was humid. What would you do? Go outside and run over 3 miles? That is exactly what over 200 people did last night for the 6th annual Chelsi’s Run, a 5k memorial race and scholarship fundraiser.
Chelsi Dawn Petersen, died June 6, 2008, in a tragic car accident at the age of 20. She was an outgoing athletic girl who loved to run. At the time, Chelsi Petersen was attending BYU and was a member of the Cougar track team as a heptathlete running in seven events.
Chelsi’s Run was started six years ago by Nancy Gubler and other friends of the Petersen family who wanted to do something in memory of Chelsi Petersen. So they created the Chelsi Petersen Memorial Fund in coordination with the Washington County School District Foundation. Chelsi’s Run scholarships benefit high school seniors who have attended at least one year at any of Dixie, Snow Canyon, Desert Hills, or Pine View High Schools. The students must have participated in at least one sport and intend to further their education at any higher education institution in any field. The run is the fund’s primary fundraiser but direct donations may be made anytime through the School District Foundation, see resources below.
“The community has been awesome,” Chelsi’s mother, Lisa Petersen, said, “this is our sixth year, Chelsi would be 26 today.”
Chelsi’s Run drew people from all over – even professional basketball player Jimmer Fredette’s wife, Whitney, formerly a BYU cheerleader, attended the run.
“We have Whitney Wonnacott Fredette here,” Lisa Petersen said. “She and her mother flew in from Colorado to be here. Whitney cheered with my daughter, Shayli Petersen”
Local high schools were represented in numbers, including Pine View, Dixie and Desert Hills, Lisa Petersen said, with members of their football teams participating and each donating $10 to the cause of Chelsi’s Run. Joining them were people of all ages and athletic abilities. Some ran, some walked and some pushed sleepy future Chelsi’s run participants in strollers. Everyone involved was happy and cheerful despite the hot and humid weather and, for some, straining muscles; and they all left with a T-shirt and commemorative bracelet.
“It is remarkable,” Lisa Petersen said. “We are able to give $8,000; to four students at four high schools .”
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Donations to the Chelsi Petersen Memorial Fund may be made by check payable directly to: The Washington County School District Foundation for Chelsi Petersen, 121 West Tabernacle, St. George, Utah 84770
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