Gopher Athletics Set to Host HopeDay Festival

Go Gophers! Gophers at HopeDay Festival
Go Gophers!
Gophers at HopeDay Festival
Go Gophers!

Sep 5, 2013

University of Minnesota coaches, student-athletes and administration will host the seventh-annual HopeDay Festival, Sunday, Sept., 8 at the Bierman Track from noon to 4 p.m. Over 200 families from the HopeKids organization will be present along with over 500 student-athletes from Minnesota will participate in the event. A majority of the Gopher coaches and director of athletics Norwood Teague will also be present. The event is designed specifically for the Golden Gopher family and members of the HopeKids organization.

The festival will include sporting clinics from a majority of the Gopher sports and student-athletes, including a dunk tank by the swim teams and obstacle course with the men's and women's track and field teams. Along with student-athletes participating in events, pony rides, a petting zoo, a rock-climbing wall and face painters are just some of the other activities that will also be available.

HopeKids is an organization which gives hope to children with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses and their families, via a program of ongoing, highly anticipated events with the message that hope is a powerful medicine. Founded in September 2001 by Robert R. Cottrell in Phoenix, Ariz., it branched out to chapters in Minneapolis/St. Paul (November 2006) and Salt Lake City (September 2008). The Phoenix chapter serves more than 500 HopeKids and their families, while the Minneapolis/St. Paul chapter serves in excess of 550 HopeKids and their families. Salt Lake City has grown to serve 200 families.  A large percentage of the children in the program have already had their one large wish from one of the various wish granting organizations, but their battle continues. A large percentage of HopeKids have cancer, however, the program also serves children with any life-threatening illnesses such as kidney disease, heart disease, sickle cell, mitochondrial and cystic fibrosis. HopeKids is for children between the ages of 0 to 18. For more information visit www.hopekids.org.