Our Volunteers

Happy New Year!  With the start of a new year comes another milestone…. the opening of American Odyssey Relay and Potomac Odyssey Relay volunteer registration! Volunteers are the absolute lifeblood of our race. With 200 miles to cover from Gettysburg, PA to Washington, DC there is no way we could cover every mile without the help of some phenomenal volunteers.

In honor of our 10th anniversary, we wanted to introduce you to some of the tremendous and loyal volunteers who come out each year to support YOU, runners!

Reminder! If you’re a team captain, remember volunteers are a required part of your participation. Each local team (local teams have at least 3 runners who live within 50 miles of any point of the American Odyssey course) must supply 3 volunteers or pay a per-volunteer waiver fee. Ultra teams (teams of 6 with at least 1 runner who lives within 50 miles of any point of the American Odyssey course), must supply 2 volunteers or pay the per-volunteer waiver fee.  Potomac Odyssey local teams (teams with at least 3 runners who live within 50 miles of any point of the Potomac Odyssey Relay course) must supply 1 volunteer or pay the per-volunteer waiver fee. The waiver fee is $75 per volunteer until March 31st, $100 from April 1-15th and $125 thereafter until race day.  All of these fees are paid directly to our charities who, in turn, supply us with the volunteers that teams don’t supply.  Volunteers can register at https://americanodysseyrelay.com/p/volunteers/

And now…. Meet Latisha Spaulding…

Latisha can be found directing traffic and cheering runners in at the top of Leg 6. She’s Superwoman so she doesn’t need an oxygen mask after that climb, and after spending her daylight hours on Cold Spring Road in Ortanna, PA, she heads to the graveyard shift at Transition 26 off the C&O Towpath. Thank you, Latisha for coming out each year and consistently being voted one of our runners’ favorite volunteers!

 

  1. Why did you begin volunteering at AOR?

My team needed volunteers and I love to support my friends and cheer, so this was a perfect way to do both.  

 

  1. Why do you continue volunteering at AOR?

I love it!!  The AOR crew has become part of my family and I look forward to the event every year.

2. What’s the funniest thing that’s happened during an AOR?

I wouldn’t say this was funny at the time, but now I look back and it turned out great.  I was finishing up at Transition 6 and my new car (within 4 months and only 2,000 miles) check engine light kicked on.  I pulled off the side of the road and SEVERAL vans stopped to see if I need help.  The final van pointed me in the direction of a shop who could look it over. So I sat in the shop for a few hours and the gentleman came out and told me, no charge, “I fixed the relay and you are good to go.”  What a wonderful act of kindness.  Then I was able to meet up with one of my vans to have dinner before traveling home

3. What’s your favorite AOR memory?

I can’t say I have one favorite memory, but 2017’s volunteer experience at Transition 26 is pretty high on the list.  It was the first transition I had my friends with me and it was at 2AM!  What great friends I have!!  So we did a super hero theme.  It was cold and a chance of rain.  Well not only did it rain, but a major thunderstorm arrived and our volunteer Allen aka Indian Jones made a tent for us to sit under with a tarp and some cording he had in his car.  It kept us dry and was a really neat experience that I’ll never forget!

4. Why do you love Transition 6?

I love Transition 6 because I get to see both of my team vans and I feel like it’s still early in the adventure and everyone is excited about either finishing their first leg or preparing for their first leg.

5. What one thing do you wish runners knew before coming into your transition?

 

For transitions at night, please shout out your number several times and wear “too much” lighting, it’s hard to see and hear with the trains and other runners around.

 

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