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Charlotte-area Athletic Event to Benefit Wounded and Recovering Marines

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation will host the second annual Marine Buddy Challenge February 7th, 2009 at Colonel Francis Beatty Park, 4330 Weddington Road, Charlotte (on the edge of Matthews). This unique two-person team competition simulates the Marine Corps' newly instituted Combat Fitness Test, assessing not only the athletes' running ability, but their overall physical fitness, as well.  Teams will compete in various combat-simulation maneuvers, in addition to a four-mile on/off-road run with backpack. 

Unlike traditional run events, participants will register in one of six categories, without regard to age or gender:  Corporate, Community, College, Public Safety, Military and Youth.  This is one way in which the event promotes Marine Corps tenets (everyone carries their own weight, regardless of age or gender).  Along those same lines, team members must stay together (a Marine never leaves another Marine behind), dress alike (uniform appearance), and compete while carrying a backpack.  Finally, volunteer Marine Reservists from the 4th Maintenance Battalion will serve as Drill Instructors, "motivating" teams throughout the course of the event.  And in the Marine Corps tradition of service, there will be a program integrated into the event whereby competitors and spectators, alike, can donate clothing  items to be passed on to local homeless shelters, especially those serving veterans.

Proceeds of the event will benefit three nonprofits:  Hope for the Warriors, earmarked for the Marine Recovery and Resource Center to be built at Camp Lejeune, NC; Homes for Our Troops, earmarked for a build in North Carolina to meet the needs of a Marine veteran; and the Second Marine Division Association's Wounded Support Fund.

The Marine Buddy Challenge is the first of three athletic events planned by the Marine Corps Coordinating Council of Greater Charlotte for 2009, comprising their Semper Fi Challenge Series.   The Marine Ultimate Team Challenge will be held in May at the U.S. National Whitewater Center, and the Marine Mud Challenge is scheduled for August at Belmont Abbey College.  Each event will benefit the organizations mentioned above.  The Series netted over $21,000 last year. 

For additional details, contact the Public Relations POC (above) or consult the web site at


Barb Christie
Marine Buddy Challenge Coordinator
(704) 847-1317

Aaron Harper
Marine Buddy Challenge Public Relations POC
(919) 272-4461

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