Make-A-Wish Alabama’s ‘Trailblaze Challenge’ may be the New Year’s resolution you’re looking for

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- Registration is now open for the 2019 Make-A-Wish Alabama Trailblaze Challenge. The challenge, a 26.3-mile hike completed in one day, will push its participants during a 14-week training program and ultimately help Make-A-Wish Alabama grant more wishes in the new year.

“This program is perfect for people of all shapes, sizes and backgrounds. We have expert hike leaders in place to provide training on some of the state’s most beautiful trail systems, and it is the job of staff members to help participants meet their fundraising goals,” says Valerie Gerber, director of development and marketing for Make-A-Wish Alabama. “There is a reason why we have more than 50 hikers returning for their second or third year.”

The challenge is clear: 26.3 miles in the Talladega National Forest in one day. This scenic trek will provide participants an opportunity for adventure, fitness and fun while directly impacting the lives of Alabama children fighting critical illnesses. For 14 weeks, hikers will train and fundraise with others across the state and will learn about the mission of Make-A-Wish Alabama.

“This event is absolutely life-changing,” says Darryl Burton, a third-year Trailblazer. “I have been blessed by this program and have met some of the finest people on the planet. Don’t miss being a part of changing the lives of children with critical illnesses. It’ll change you, too.”

Interested participants can visit alabamatrailblaze.org for more information and to RSVP for an informational meeting. Attending a meeting is mandatory, and meetings are being held at various times in Birmingham, Huntsville and Mobile. The hike weekends will be May 3-5 and May 17-19, and the deadline to register is January 24, 2019.