On June 2nd, our team participated in the “Amazing Race.” I know what you are thinking, I love that show! Well not quite, this “Amazing Race” was held at the Lake Shore foundation, a greatly under appreciated fixture of Birmingham. With a small sign at the entrance behind a major highway it may be missed by some, but the 45 acre campus hidden in the trees is truly remarkable!
In 1973, the Lakeshore Rehabilitation center was founded to be a place of healing for those with disabilities. The administrator for the facility, Michael Stephens, noticed that after patients were discharged that they would eventually return months later with other injuries or pressure sores from lack of activity. Due to these multiple occurrences, the idea of the Lakeshore Foundation was created. Lakeshore Foundation created a place where those with disabilities could come and be active by participating in multiple different activities. The Birmingham Chariots wheelchair basketball team was Birmingham’s first adapted sports team in 1984. Soon after basketball was joined by tennis, swimming, track, aerobics, and many youth programs; hence, the foundation was born.
This event was a blast and one we cannot wait to participate in annually! This event was comprised of 20 plus events that raised disability awareness. Some of the events included doing laps around a track in a wheelchair, kayaking with only one usable arm, and wheelchair basketball. I will be the first person to say NONE of it was easy. I left truly inspired by those with a disability who continue to stay active and capitalize on their situation.
We all knew our team was competitive, but this event took it to a whole new level. We came in second place out of thirty teams and only lost by 2 minutes. We have already been strategizing on how to win next year and can’t wait to go back and support a great cause!