Following last year’s disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual Oxford Buddy Walk is scheduled to return on October 17 at the Old Armory Pavilion. Sponsored by 21 United of Mississippi, this event attracts participation from residents of Lafayette and surrounding counties as well as from outside the state of Mississippi.
âThe cancellation of last year’s event was heartbreaking because it’s such a fun event for our community,â said Jenny Rayner, president of 21 United. “All of our in-person events in 2020 have been canceled, and this is the first time since the 2019 Buddy Walk that we have been able to see our friends from across the region.”
The Sunday afternoon event will start at 2 p.m. DJ Sammy Kim will once again provide the music. The medal presentations and the walk are scheduled for 2:30 pm In addition to the walk, the event will include food and drinks, a magic show, face painting, fire engines, children’s games and a t-shirt for all participants.
Registration for walkers is $ 15. Buddy Walk friends with special needs can participate for free. Participants are encouraged to pre-register online at ds-stride.org/21unitedbuddywalk. A link to the registration is also available on the 21 United Facebook page.
“This pandemic even took away our annual summer camp for our families with Down’s syndrome,” Rayner said. “Our plan is to make our camp and other programs stronger than ever, and the Buddy Walk is our fundraising tool that makes these events possible.”
Created by three families from Oxford, 21 United of Mississippi is a non-profit organization that advocates for the inclusion, value and acceptance of people with Down syndrome. The product from the Buddy Walk is used for new parent packages, educational meetings, networking events, and camp scholarships.
Sponsors for this event are needed, and opportunities exist for businesses and individuals who wish to generate goodwill. To learn more about sponsorship levels, contact Jenny Rayner at 662-380-0577 or [email protected]