HABITAT: Was that the weekend that just roared by?

There’s NO CHANCE of ever getting bored around here. And that’s a good thing.

This past weekend, Habitat held its fourth annual, biggest and best ever, HabiTrot to Higher Education. We had 245 runners/walkers and a nice batch of Bunny Hop runners, too.  

We always hold the HabiTrot at South Beach Park, which is a great place to gather at 7:30 a.m., right on the ocean, nice and cool.

And the roads we run on are in a very pretty part of the beach area. I don’t know just yet what we cleared, but whatever it ends up being will be a great help to our Habitat Scholarship Program.

A BIG shout-out goes to our Volunteer Coordinator Jessica Schmitt for running the event. Jesse is a dedicated runner herself and was the one who came up with the idea – and the name!

A tip of the Bunny Ears to you, Jesse!

I didn’t get to participate in the Trot this year because I was up in North County for the annual Sebastian Earth Day Celebration. This is always a pleasant event in which to take part. Riverview Park is a very pretty, mostly shady place. We bring our usual Habitat info display and a batch of the birdhouses and birdhouse kits our volunteers build with scrap lumber from our job sites.

Habitat is very much a pro-active recycler, in as many ways as we can be. You should see the birdhouses our talented volunteer artists create. They are amazing and, when you buy one, the money goes into the above-mentioned Scholarship Program.

We do as much as we can to promote higher education for the sons and daughters of our Habitat homeowners because we strongly believe that it is an excellent way to break the cycle of poverty. One of our goals is to eliminate the need for second-generation Habitat homeowners altogether.

One of the fun things I get to do in this PR/Communications position involves our mascot, Hamilton the Hammer. I like to think of Hamilton as our PR Assistant. Hamilton was created about 4 years ago and attends several of our events throughout the year. He is a very tall costume character, a great attention getter and a smile-maker. (Other than the occasional freaked-out toddler, which all mascots run into every once in a while.)

I had some mascot alter ego experience back in the ’90s with the county’s recycling mascot, Garbby, whom I still run into now and then at Green events. So going from a giant garbage can to a giant hammer seemed a logical progression.

On this busy Saturday, Hamilton cheered the HabiTrot runners on and helped with awards in the morning (thanks to a good-natured young Habitat volunteer) and then headed up to Sebastian for the second gig of the day.

Since there was an Easter Egg hunt just across the way, we had a big herd of kids and parents in the park, so Hamilton had a blast. I won’t mention the number it does on one’s hair-do. But you get to wear bright orange shoes and red and white striped sox to make up for it. Plus, they played the Time Warp song from Rocky Horror and Hamilton got to get his groove on.

Have a good one.

Sam Baita, Public Relations Indian River Habitat for Humanity 772.562.9860 X220 sbaita@irchabitat.org

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