Climbing for a good cause
Dozens of people are set to power up Nga¯ruawa¯hia’s Ha¯karimata Summit over 24 hours to support a cancer charity.
Hamilton podiatrist Andrew Jones is part of a team running the event off their own bat to fundraise for the Hamilton Cancer Society’s Lions Lodge.
It was inspired by fellow gym member and friend Gene Lentfer who was diagnosed with bowel cancer about three months ago, Jones said.
A former school friend was also diagnosed with breast cancer and stayed at the lodge during treatment, he said.
‘‘I went and saw her up at the lodge and saw how cool it was,’’ he said.
It will be kicked off at 6pm on October 13 with a karakia and the first set of people to venture up will be those affected by cancer.
‘‘We’ve got a couple of cancer sufferers and survivors starting and finishing it.’’
The challenge is to reach the top of the 1349 steps, take a selfie and head back down with the proof which will be added to the summit tally.
The idea to use the summit was inspired by someone who recently took on the challenge to climb the stairs for 24 hours solo.
But Jones thought it would be fun to make it a collaborative effort.
‘‘I like the idea of putting the fun in fundraiser,’’ he said.
On the Friday night there is the option to dress up as well.
He’s already received plenty of interest with 50 people signed up including a mum and her three children who are set to take on the stairs at 4am.
Jones is hoping to ensure each hour will have at least one person going up.
The event is open to anyone and registrations can be done at the Active Discoverers car park.
Contribution will be a koha and a sausage sizzle is expected to be cranking through most of the event and spot prizes will be up for grabs.
Lentfer will also be there with a massage table.
Andrew Jones is hoping the Ha¯karimata fundraiser will draw in enough people to bring the summit tally to 25.