Your Name: Sandy Samberg
Your Volunteer Position: Team Captain of the Sole Ryeders
Your Day Job: I’m a mom and a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner; I’ve been devoting most of my time over the past five years to various non-profit organizations.
MyRye.com: On October 6th and 7th, you will be leading a group of 26 women from Rye called the Sole Ryeders walking on the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer New York. 3,500 people walking to support a cure for breast cancer–what’s the deal?
26 of us, mostly Rye moms, will be trekking 40 miles throughout New York and New Jersey in an effort to raise money for breast cancer. We’re each raising a minimum of $1,800 from friends, family and local fundraisers. We’ve all been affected by breast cancer, either directly or indirectly, and are committed to helping eradicate this disease that devastates so many lives.
Why did you decide to organize the Rye Sole Ryders?
Between losing one friend to cancer last year, having another one diagnosed with it, and getting the green light from my cardiologist less than one year after having open heart surgery, I signed up for the 2006 Avon Walk not really knowing what to expect. Fortunately, I was joined by two friends (Maiju Savage and Laura DeVita) and we had an incredible experience. We were so inspired by all of the people we met, each with a different story about how/why they got to the starting line. Many of them were on teams and their team spirit was contagious (in a good way!).
The three of us decided that instead of doing the walk as individuals in 2007 that we would start a team from our hometown, Rye. There are a lot of logistics involved in this experience, so I hired my 8 year old son to be our secretary. He has a spreadsheet on my computer and he continually updates it with everyone’s information (i.e. what events they’re attending throughout the weekend, t-shirt size, how much money they’ve raised, if they’re willing to volunteer with the fundraisers, if they have a tent mate etc). [PHOTO, BELOW: Sandy, Laura DeVita and Maiju Savage. More photos from the 2006 walk that inspired the Rye Sole Ryeders.]
How much money will you raise?
We’ve raised just over $25,000 to date, which ranks us #11 among the 314 teams registered for the NY walk! Our goal is to raise $50,000 and we’re fairly confident that we’ll get there. We’re reaching out to friends and family for donations and are also planning to host some local fundraisers in September. Ideas range from bake sales/concession stands at local youth sporting events to TV season premiere ‘mom’s night out’ to family sporting events.
This is a two day walk. Where and how long do you walk? Where do you sleep?
Our first walk will be on Friday, from our hotel to John’s Pizza for our carb-loading team dinner. The official walk starts in Manhattan very early on Saturday morning and goes through Brooklyn and New Jersey before returning to the finish line in Manhattan on Sunday. While you can walk either a marathon (26.2 miles) or a marathon and a half (39.4 miles) over the two days, most of the Sole Ryeders see only one option—the marathon and a half. This is a team of very accomplished women and we don’t give up easily!
You camp in New Jersey?
We will spend Saturday night camping out in Mackay Park in Englewood New Jersey, sort of like a big mom sleepover!
Will all 26 of you be dressing in bright pink and conducting practice walks in Rye?
We’re creating our own logo, which we will put on the front of our shirts. On the back of the shirts we’ll have ‘Words to Live By’, which includes several inspirational quotes for those behind us to read—they’re great conversation pieces when you’re walking 7 hours in a day! We’ll be doing our long training walks (which go through Rye, Harrison and Port Chester) on September 8th, 9th, 15th and 16th.
What are those 26 Rye dads going to do with all of you walking? Is there going to be a run on takeout pizza across the Sound shore October 6th and 7th? Personally, I’m in a complete panic. [Publisher’s note: my wife, Lauren Rosen, is one of the Sole Ryeders.]
Most of our families are going to join in on the fun at Mackay Park on Saturday night. They’ll bring picnic dinners (Avon provides a hot dinner for the walkers) and check out our tents, the hot shower trucks and all of the fun things that go on in the ‘Wellness Village’ (not sure who will need the massages more—the moms or the dads?!). We’re also hoping to get some Sole Ryeder kids relay races going! Back in Rye on Sunday night, we’d like to have a celebratory dinner, but the planning is still in the early stages.
Is there a group from Harrison walking? Rye Garnet pride says we have to beat them.
I’m not aware of a group from Harrison, but we have our eyes set on the 10 teams that have raised more money than we have. This is a determined bunch…so I have no doubt that we’ll crack the top 10 list very soon!
Where do you live in Rye?
I live on Ann Lane in Rye, which is in the Midland district. We already have 4 Ann Laners on the Sole Ryeders (of course, this makes fundraising on Ann Lane a bit of a challenge!).
How else are you involved in the community?
I’m involved with a variety of local organizations including:
• Rye YMCA
• Midland Elementary School
• Heard in Rye
• Carver Center in Port Chester
• Open Door Health Care Center in Port Chester
This keeps me busy, but the organizations are great…and I love that I get to work with both kids and moms.
How does someone join the Rye Sole Ryders team?
If you’re interested in joining the Sole Ryeders, sign up on the Avon site and click on ‘Join Sole Ryeders’. The more the merrier!
Who are these 26 amazing Rye women walking in the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer New York? How can friends and family support these women besides foot massages on October 8th?
People can support us by making donations, coming to our fundraisers, cheering us on, and yes, we’ll take any and all foot massages and pedicures come October 8th! My toenails are still bruised from last year’s walk!
[*=Rye City resident. Click on the person’s name to see their Avon Walk page and make a donation.]
*Sandy Samberg—Ann Lane
*Molly Aube—Ann Lane
*Laurie Batal—Forest Ave
*Laura Devita—Forest Ave/Ann Lane
Dawn Ewing—Sleepy Hollow, NY
*Hilary Garland—Kirby Lane
*Catherine Giller—Pine Lane
*Lynn Halpern—Florence Ave
*Pati Holmes—Hillside Rd
*Stephanie Hoover—Ann Lane
*Christie Manning—Ridgewood Drive; moving to Hong Kong this month
*Katharine Muccia—Thorne Place
*Lauren Rosen—Florence Ave
*Augustina Santucci—Julian Rd
*Marjut Savage—Davis Ave
*Karen Schulz—Central Ave
*Elizabeth Zahm—Ridgewood Drive
Tell us your contact information:
Web site: Sole Ryeders/Avon Walk for Breast Cancer New York
Your phone: 914-921-5927
Your email address: sandysamberg (AT) earthlink.net
So instead of organizing a nice fundraiser for a good cause, focus on the fact that “moms” are doing it, alienating others. Ridiculous. Please!