To insure a safe and fun event, the Take the Lake steering committee has decided to hit the “pause” button on the Labor Day fitness challenge this year. Plans are to resume the traditional 3-day physical challenge next year. New jobs, moves and delayed vacations are just a few of the timing and logistic conflicts past TTL volunteers are handling this summer. It was a hard decision to take a pause, but one that is in everyone's best interest this year. It takes dozens of volunteers led by a strong steering committee plus police, park rangers, fire and rescue squads, civic groups and sponsoring businesses to coordinate a Take the Lake that’s safe, well-managed and fun in the traditional in-person format. Several local individuals and organizations have expressed interest in collaborating with planning Take the Lake 2023. The steering committee is spending this year regrouping after two years of disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Keep an eye out on takethelake.org, the Take the Lake Facebook page and The News Reporter for Take the Lake updates. *Credit to Diana Matthews at The News Reporter for help with this news brief.
Julie and Don Stocks present Wes Crutchfield the Jennie Stocks Youngest Swimmer Award. Crutchfield, age 11, was the youngest swimmer to complete the lake crossing in the 2021 Labor Day Big Swim.
By Diana Matthews,
The News Reporter
Another virtual Take The Lake is now in the rearview mirror, and organizers reported Tuesday that more than 200 participants together recorded 6,990 miles of running, walking, swimming, pedaling and paddling.
Participants in the annual fitness challenge chose their own times and places to get miles in, then logged them on a website that showed them how far around Lake Waccamaw they had virtually progressed.
Christine and Tim Houlihan searched the internet for a town with good air quality and a lake; they visited Lake Waccamaw and fell in love. “We love the lake, the people, and the country way of living that we were both used to,” she said. The mile markers around the lake aroused their curiosity, leading them to register
We congratulate these 4 determined swimmers for completing the traditional Labor Day swim established by Lee J. Greer. Each swimmer was accompanied by an escort boat. Congratulations to Wes Crutchfield, Lucy Crutchfield, Anna Vick and Walter Palmer.
Would you like a Take the Lake t-shirt? Body Shapers at #28 South Whiteville Plaza in Whiteville https://www.bodyshapersgym.net/ is helping us out with selling our colorful 2021 TTL turquoise and rainbow tie-dye shirts at the gym while supplies last. Shirts are $20 each and payable by cash or check (made out to Take the Lake). All sizes are in stock, but quantities are limited and first-come, first-serve. Thank you for supporting Take the Lake! Have a fun and safe Labor Day Weekend and good luck completing your personal fitness challenges
Post your TTL distances through mid-night Monday online HERE. Good luck and have a super fun weekend with the forecast of cooler temperatures. It's not too late to register for Take the Lake. Go HERE to register. There is no cost to participate. Set a Labor Day weekend goal, get out and go for it, log your distances, and join in the fun with the TTL Facebook group community HERE.
Join TTL 2021 Facebook group to share your TTL experience and support others on their fitness journey
Join the Take the Lake 2021 Facebook group to share your fitness journey and support our fellow TTL participants.
Good morning and welcome to day 1 of the 15 days of your personal Take the Lake fitness challenge. We are super excited you are here and support you all the way. Summer weather can be unpredictable, so check the radar before heading out. If it's safer to get your workout in the gym, indoor pool, or at home, download our exercise conversion chart in this link to help you convert your movement minutes to miles. It's not too late to register for TTL - participation is free!
Tomorrow - Friday, August 20 - is t-shirt pickup day for Lake Waccamaw at CrossFit LKW located at Hills Shopping Center, 16 East Old US Highway 74/76. Look for us on the porch near the CrossFit LKW front door from 12:00pm to 1:30pm and from 5pm - 6:30pm. Just drive up, give us your name, and we will give you your pre-packaged and pre-paid shirt and JAMA. Thank you CrossFit LKW for supporting TTL! Register for Take the Lake at https://runsignup.com/Race/NC/LakeWaccamaw/TTL2020
Tomorrow - Wednesday, August 18 - is t-shirt pickup day for Whiteville at Body Shapers located at #28 Whiteville Plaza in the shopping center behind McDonald's on S. Madison Street. Look for us on the porch near the Body Shaper's front door from 12:00pm to 1:30pm and from 5pm - 6:30pm. Just drive up, give us your name, and we will hand you your pre-packed and pre-paid shirt and JAMA. Pickup day at Lake Waccamaw is Friday at CrossFit LKW. T-shirts can still be ordered online at https://runsignup.com/Race/NC/LakeWaccamaw/TTL2020
The 2021 TTL shirts have arrived and they are FANTASTIC! Get yours while supplies last at https://runsignup.com/Race/NC/LakeWaccamaw/TTL2020. Thank you to Josie, Cindy, Jeff and Jordan at Body Shapers in Whiteville https://www.bodyshapersgym.net/ and Brianna, Donnie, Leanne, Coleman and Ella at CrossFit LKW in Lake Waccamaw https://crossfit-lkw.triib.com/ for serving as contactless t-shirt pickup locations. See pick-up options, dates and times below. Thank you for supporting TTL with your t-shirt purchase:) The 2021 Take the Lake virtual challenge begins Monday, August 23 and runs through Labor Monday, September 6, 2021. How will you take the Lake? READY TO REGISTER? Click here to go straight to the site hosting our registration.
SHIRT PICK UP OPTIONS
1. Pick up in Whiteville (Wednesday 8/18 from 12:00pm - 1:30pm and from 5pm - 6:30pm)
28 Whiteville Plaza
2. Pick up at Lake Waccamaw (Friday 8/20 from 12:00pm - 1:30pm and from 5pm - 6:30pm)
(Hills Shopping Center)
116 East Old US Highway 74/76
Lake Waccamaw, NC 28450
3. Have your Packet Mailed for an additional $6.95. Shipping will be on Thursday 8/19
July 4th was a gorgeous weekend and the perfect time to launch training goals for 2021 Take the Lake. Registration is open and Take the Lake virtual event dates are Monday, August 23 to (midnight) Labor Day Monday, September 6. All events are free and t-shirts are available for sale on the registration site. Proceeds from shirt sales help pay for the event expenses.
Free registration includes access to the site’s daily exercise tracking platform. Users track progress as they virtually “circle” Lake Waccamaw, regardless of where they actually do their miles.
Along the way, users receive virtual milestone badges, motivation, encouragement and a physical John A. McNeill Award, or “JAMA.”
Teams are a fun way to share TTL with friends and family near and far. You can setup your teams during registration. Last year 23 teams formed to take the lake, from the Solefinetrekkers to the Gator Dominators and Watermelon Wranglers. Team members tackled their fitness challenges from far-away states and countries as well as in Columbus County.
Look for recent news and share your team goals and achievements on our TTL Facebook page and/or join our TTL 2021 Facebook Group to cheer each other on.
NEW for 2021 - Take the Lake TIE DYE TEES
Available in Turquoise Unisex and Youth and Pastel Rainbow Ladies. Shirts are first come, first serve so grab yours today!
Get your shirt during registration or visit the Take the Lake Store.
Thank you for supporting Take the Lake.
How will you Take the Lake in 2021?
Back by popular demand...the Take the Lake Challenge.
In 2020, COVID caused us to make some modifications to our traditional Take the Lake event. We heard such great feedback about the 2020 event, that we have decided to "Bring Back the Fun in 21" with a virtual event.
We know you might be pretty bummed we can't have an in-person event, and we are, too. We are all about hosting a safe and healthy event, and we are just not comfortable, at this point, to plan for and host a large scale event. But, we are not going to let that stop us from getting outside and working on our personal fitness challenges virtually with friends and family near and far this summer.
How can I participate in Take the Lake Challenges?
Take the Lake is all about you and working toward your own personal fitness goal and journey.
Our traditional events such walk, run, hike, paddle, swim, and rowing are definitely in the mix since they are the core of our traditional in-person events. But don't rule at dance, a fitness class, or Cross-Fit...the sky is the limit..just get out and get moving! Log your miles each day and track your miles on our virtual map to see exactly where you are on the route whether it’s in the state park, Waccamaw Shores, or Canal Cove Rd, etc. We encourage everyone at every fitness level to participate. Gather your friends and family to "Take the Lake" virtually from all over the world. If you have health issues, have never exercised before, or it’s been a long time since you participated in physical activities, we recommend you get medical clearance before you start a fitness program.
What type of exercise miles can I log?
Walk, run, hike, bike, swim, row, paddle OR use our exercise conversion chart to convert your movement minutes to miles.
How long is the Take the Lake Challenge?
15 Days! Why 15 days? Because it is 15 miles around the lake. Challenge yourself to move 1 mile a day and you will have made one loop around the lake in 15 days. Challenge yourself to move 2 miles a day and you will have made 2 loops around the lake in 15 days! You get the idea...how far will you go in 15 days.
How do I submit my miles?
Check out the FAQ page for instructions on logging your miles, converting exercise minutes to miles and downloading your digital bib.
What is included with my registration?
FREE! Take the Lake is a completely FREE event. You will have the option to purchase a T-shirt or make a donation during registration.
Team Take the Lake. We know family vacations and group gatherings may be canceled for the summer but with Team Take the Lake, you still Take the Lake together from virtually anywhere. Each person on your team will log miles individually, but the miles will add together to for a team total. We have three team options to select from: Run/Walk Only, Bike Only, A Little Bit of Everything Option.
NEW FOR 2021
TIE DYE! YES! You heard us RIGHT! This year's Tees are Tie Dye and So Much Fun! Be sure to grab one during registration to support Take the Lake. T-shirts are first come, first served, so don't miss out.
Tim and Edna Dowless of locally-owned TLD ScreenPrinting will supply t-shirts again this year. Thank you Tim and Edna!
READY TO REGISTER? Click here to go straight to the site hosting our registration. THANK YOU to the virtually awesome folks at FULL SEND for coordinating Take the Lake 2021. They totally make it happen.
Sorry for the t-shirt delay! Just an update - I picked-up the remaining t-shirts Thursday and got some in the mail Friday and plan to put the rest in the mail today. If you haven't received your shirt order by the end of the week (Oct. 9), please let me know so I can cross-check and make sure you receive your shirt asap!
A total of 352 people took part in Take the Lake 2020, collectively logging a total of 14,539.585 miles on land and water between Aug. 23 and Sept. 7. That’s more than halfway around the Earth!
TTL categories included Run, Walk, Bike, Paddle and Swim, with some folks doing A Little Bit of Everything. Thank you for supporting TTL with your t-shirt purchases and donations. Your generosity has covered our expenses this year, and we are ready to start planning TTL 2021. We hope you will join us again next year. Keep up the good exercise habits and wishing every good health!
Today is a beautiful final day at Lake Waccamaw to finish up your TTL personal challenge goals. Be sure and share your goal crushing photos on the Take the Lake facebook page https://www.facebook.com/takethelake. Thank you to each of our 345 registered participants for making Take the Lake 2020 Virtual Challenge such a wonderful 15-day journey of endurance and achievement. You inspire us! Thank you for ""taking the lake" both near and far.
Take the Lake will present special awards this year to recognize the incredible personal achievements accomplished during the 15-day event
This year with the 15-day format, we decided to add some awards to recognize the overall and category distance winners plus include some fun "superlative" awards to recognize the TTL spirit, creativity, guts, glory and teamwork. The awards will be locally sourced and fun:) and sent by mail after the event. Winners will be published in The News Reporter. The beloved and special edition JAMA's are on the way for those who have not received them.
Here is the format for the results-driven awards ... There will be a male and female overall long distance winner based on total miles exercised from all 5 categories. Both overall winners are not eligible to receive a top distance award based on the other 5 categories (Running, Biking, Walking, Swimming, Paddling). This allows other participants to earn a top award. The category winners will be decided as follows:
- Running Overall Distance Winners M/F
- Biking Overall Distance Winners M/F
- Walking Overall Distance Winners M/F
- Swimming Overall Distance Winners M/F
- Paddling Overall Distance Winners M/F
T-shirt update...We delivered the "August 24th" order of t-shirts to the post office Thursday for shipping 1st class, so hoping you get them very soon. Feel free to message us with any questions. All t-shirts ordered after August 24th will be delivered in the last t-shirt to be place September 10..
It's hard to believe Labor Day Weekend is here. It's not too late to register for Take the Lake and enjoy the cooler weather Saturday, Sunday and our bonus day, Labor Day Monday with a high of 82?? Sounds lovely after a sweating it out this week. Here's a view of the lovely lake this evening. Click here to register - https://runsignup.com/Race/NC/LakeWaccamaw/TTL2020
Long-time Lee J. Greer Labor Day swimmers and volunteers Julie Stocks and Laura Greer Vick caught up with us with some swim recommendations for your TTL swim challenge...
Participants that complete a 4.25 mile swim at one time (equivalent to the lake crossing) will receive the traditional gold Lee J. Greer medallion donated by Collier's Jewelers of Whiteville.
Swimmers that complete the 4.25 mile distance in shorter segments will receive the silver Lee J Greer medallion. GPS measurements of mileage is highly recommended.
We miss everyone gathering to celebrate Take the Lake! But, we have a lot to celebrate with our virtual participants hailing from 12 states and Thailand!!! Share the registration link with friends and family and let's see how many more states we can add!! https://runsignup.com/Race/NC/LakeWaccamaw/TTL2020
Thailand - Hi Mark Gilchrist!
Monday morning inspiration! Love this article by Diana Matthews that recently ran in The News Reporter about long time TTL volunteers Grant Egley and Amanda Worley....
He ran and walked the distance of Tennessee. His next goal? Take the Lake
This year’s virtual format for Take the Lake is attracting hardcore athletes and first-timers alike to complete one or more laps around North Carolina’s largest bay lake at their own pace.
Veteran long-distance runner Grant Egley recommends that each participant set a goal to work toward between Aug. 23 and Sept. 7. He hopes that some who have previously been sedentary will keep the exercise habit going after Labor Day.
Last week Egley, 88, finished a 104-day project in which he ran and walked 635 miles, representing the distance across the state of Tennessee “from Memphis to Bristol,” he said.
Egley did all those miles in Lake Waccamaw State Park or on the adjacent Bella Coola Road, where he lives. “20,000 people from all over the world” took part, Egley said.
Fast running is hard on him these days, he said, but he makes up for lost speed with consistency. “I started May first and averaged more than six miles a day, six days a week,” said Egley. “I only missed one day. “
He keeps up this steady pace in order to maintain “general fitness and health,” he said. “I believe in regular exercise. I feel good doing it, and I attribute my good fitness at age 88 to doing this sort of thing for years.”
Egley has been a runner and athlete since his teens and has completed 50- and 100-mile ultra marathons. These days he typically runs about three miles at a time, five or six days a week, so the Tennessee race meant doubling his usual efforts. Egley also walks a mile a day with his wife, Donna Egley.
“We can do more than we think we can do when we’re motivated,” he said.
Take the Lake 2020 will be a much smaller challenge than the Tennessee race. But it will be an uncommon opportunity for the Egleys. Both of them have volunteered for Take the Lake since its beginning. In fact, they pioneered the first group walks around the lake in “about 2005 or 2006,” before the cycling and paddling events were added in 2009.
They have usually not been able to get onto the road themselves during the events because they were too busy helping supervise logistics details for hundreds of other people. This year they have the freedom to concentrate on their own goals.
Donna Egley’s goal is to log 15 miles of walking; her husband’s is “three miles a day of walking and jogging, so a total of about 50 miles. Maybe I’ll do more,” he said, “but I won’t have to. I’m in pretty good shape.”
Egley advises new walkers or runners not to take on a long run until they’ve gradually built up their abilities “30 minutes a day, three or four times a week. Get out and walk a mile a day,” he says. “They can probably do that.”
‘I can do that’
Amanda Worley, 87, will participate in her first TTL this year with a goal of 15 miles or one virtual lap around the lake. “I’ve helped with registration ever since Take the Lake started, but I never participated because I knew I couldn’t walk all the way around the lake, and I certainly couldn’t bike around,” she said.
When she heard about this year’s virtual format, she remembered Johnny McNeill, John Singletary and other friends who walked a mile a day in their 90s. “I can do that,” Worley decided. She already walks her dogs Sally and Basil three times a day in her quiet neighborhood.
She used her pedometer and her car’s odometer to measure the route she would cover and convert it into steps. “I can finally walk around the lake,” she decided.
Worley formed a multi-generational team and named it Mimi’s Mirage. Her daughter and son-in-law Teresa and Richard Hopkins have taken part in the bike and paddling events in past years; they will log their miles with hers this year. Her granddaughter Celia Barbieri committed to cover her miles in Asheville. Granddaughter Kenna Grigorov in Kansas City will join in with sons Alex, 11, and Lucca, 5.
Like Egley, Worley would like to see more people accept the TTL challenge. “You can do it in increments,” she said. “I have friends who walk several times a week and are capable of doing it. They’re all younger than I am.”
To register for the free do-it-yourself fitness challenge, participants should go to takethelake.org and select “Register” from the menu. Steering committee chair Stuart Rogers recommends that users bookmark the site because they will be returning to it each day during the event to log their miles and see their virtual progress around the lake. Miles can be logged starting Aug. 23.
Donations and T-shirt sales support the monitoring site, postage and other behind-the-scenes costs. TTL committee members are volunteers.
Take the Lake would not be possible without our generous sponsors. Thank you for supporting fitness and good health in our community!
Thank you to our sponsors!
Columbus Regional Healthcare System
The John A. McNeill Family
Carolina Sports Medicine
Council Tool Company
Friends of Rube McCrae Memorial Library
Hill's Food Stores
Southeastern Community College
Baldwin Woods Pharmacy
Dale's Seafood Restaurant
Powell and Powell Law
Sam’s Pit Stop
Special Service Sponsors
Body Shapers Fitness Center
Lake Time Vintiques
The News Reporter
Take a few minutes and reel through the years of Take the Lake, as we review the many themes and posters that have helped make fitness more fun in Columbus County! Click here
DID YOU KNOW...
that the second-most-popular Boy Scout merit badge in the U.S. is for Swimming? And the ninth-most-popular is Personal Fitness? Yes!
Six girls complete
all four PECs.
Are you ready?
Visit our Sponsor Page, or Contact us if you would like to be a part of the largest community fitness event in Columbus County!