In many communities, nonprofit organizations such as The Open Door, Cape Ann Animal Aid, the First R Foundation reading program and local church groups often have to compete for attention for their major fundraisers, notably walk-a-thons and other such events based on people pledging support.
Thankfully, here on Cape Ann, that's not always the case.
Yes, those and dozens of other nonprofit groups conduct a lot of fundraising om their own. But once a year, thanks to some enterprising organizers more than two decades ago, as many as 40 such organizations all join together for a very special event that shows that serving the community is indeed a united effort, and that they — and we — all share the unified goal of helping our Gloucester and other Cape Ann neighbors, especially in today's difficult times.
That event is Gloucester's Pride Stride, which not only marks its 25th anniversary when the 2012 edition of the walk steps off Sunday at noon from Stage Fort Park, but goes into its landmark 25th event with an even more important milestone in sight — the $1 million fundraising mark. If the nonprofits participating in this year's event raise some $20,000, it will mean Pride Stride itself has raised $1 million since its debut.
That's an extraordinary achievement for folks like Dave Stozter, Dani Stotzer, Dennis Acker and so many others who have steered this effort forward.
Acker indicated Tuesday that "numbers are down" for this year's event, with roughly 20 groups having registered, compared to the 40 who participated last year. Hopefully, however, that will change in the days to come, and the Pride Stride will surpass its goal and prove as successful as ever.
Pride Stride is, after all, a part of Gloucester pride itself. Let's all help to once again make it a winner.