Bringing Home the BaconOn the Road Again, Day 4: Oklahoma City, OK to Dodge City, KS
Though we enjoyed a brief visit with our cousins Ann and Eddie after Friday night services last night, today we were looking forward to spending a bit more time with them and also catching up with their younger son Fred, so we all met for lunch at the local P.F. Chang's. A high school junior, Fred has a passion for life and eagerly pursues a wide variety of interests and activities. He competes on his high school's academic team, serves as a state officer in an organization for Jewish teens, teaches Hebrew at his synagogue, and achieved the rank of Eagle Scout last year. (And he maintains that fierce Afro, which his friends call the Fred-dress.) He is actually involved in more—much more—but today he was enthusing about a project at his high school known as Swine Week.
|Visiting with Ann and Eddie and their son Fred|
What started as a minor project has grown to be an event which genuinely makes a difference in the lives of Oklahomans. In the succeeding 27 years, students at Edmond Memorial High have raised in excess of $3.5 million for a variety of charities. In their most successful year to date they donated $527,000 to an Oklahoma cancer center for children in 2010.
Two other high schools in the city of Edmond have joined the charitable bandwagon and the three schools raise more than $1 million annually. Though they're a bit competitive in seeing which school can do the most good, there is also a collaboration project. Five percent of each school's fundraising total goes to a charity they designate as their Common Thread. This year's Common Thread recipient is A New Leash on Life, an organization which trains assistance dogs and provides them to Oklahomans with a variety of disabilities. What a delight to hear about teens making such a remarkable difference in their world! Check out the Swine Week web site to learn more about this impressive tradition.
After our wonderful visit with Ann, Eddie and Fred, we headed out toward Dodge City, Kansas, following the back roads and passing through one small town after another that seemed to close up shop on Saturday. Maybe everyone was home watching their favorite college team play football—or shopping at the nearest Walmart.
|Laverne, OK, all but deserted on Saturday afternoon|
- Miles: 304
- Gas price in Oklahoma: $2.909 for premium (first sub-$3 gas since we bought this car in 2011)
- Letterboxes: 1
- Tolls paid on OKC turnpike: too many