After receiving hundreds of submissions from children in local schools and online for a contest to name its Amazing Half Marathon gator mascot, Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital announced the winning name of Dash, submitted by 6-year-old Cannon Jack Duncan. The kindergarten student from St. James Episcopal Day School was recognized Friday with a celebration at his school and a free entry in the Kids’ Mini-Marathon for next year’s race.
Duncan chose the name Dash in honor of his older brother Dash Duncan, a graduating college senior who played high school football at St. Michael in Baton Rouge and college football for Nicholls State in Thibodaux. Dash Duncan is coincidentally also headed to medical school in the fall.
“We loved the name Dash because of its reference to running,” said Shaun Kemmerly, MD, chief medical officer of Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital. “When we found out that the winner’s brother who inspired the name is on his way to becoming a doctor, it was clear that we picked the perfect name for our gator!”
Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital also announced the winners of the Amazing Half Marathon school participation contest on Friday. Baton Rouge Foreign Language Academic Immersion Magnet (FLAIM) captured first place with 60 participants, and St. James came in second with 20 runners. The school contest was a program to encourage kids to get active, but the winners also received monetary prizes to go toward physical education equipment.
“It was exciting to have so many of my students get up and put on their running gear on a Saturday morning for a race and to show how much they enjoy running and keeping their bodies healthy,” said Bonnie Richardson, Baton Rouge FLAIM physical education teacher. “The prize money will go toward purchasing new physical education equipment that I was previously unable to afford for my classes and also equipment and incentives that will enhance my thriving after-school running club.”
The Amazing Half Marathon weekend is an extension of Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital’s vision to create a healthier Louisiana through teaching families healthy habits. More than 2,200 runners participated in this year’s races held on March 11-12.
Look for details on next year’s Amazing Half Marathon weekend to be released soon along with a one-day discounted registration blitz. For more information on the race, visit www.amazinghalf.com.
Dash with the Duncan Family. (L-R) Dash, Gunnar, Cannon Jack, Brandy and Chris.
Dash greets students at St. James Episcopal Day School.