Local competition has global impact

       “It was an honor for me to help 40 racers remember they are running a race for those kids who can’t. We seek to make a difference in the lives of those who are forgotten or hurting.”


– Tyson Ray,


Geneva Lakes Amazing Race


By Alexandrea Dahlstrom

SLN staff

Forty charity-minded locals making up 20 teams came out last weekend to endure extremely hot weather and grueling challenges in their quest to take the 2012 Geneva Lakes Amazing Race title.

. In order to compete, each team committed to raising at least $1,000, with the highest team sponsorship reaching more than $3,000.

Beginning at the Geneva Ridge Resort Aug. 4, competing couples accepted 25 lofty challenges that took them to specific locations across Walworth County and at the same time, earned funding for charities that support women and children in desperate need, half a world away.

Julie Nor (left) and Jenny Ray – Team FORM Impact took the 2012 Walworth County Amazing Race title.

This year’s event brought in more than $30,000 for worthy causes.

Children’s World Impact is among charities that reaped the benefits from the race.

Event director Tyson Ray, and his wife, Jenny, founded the Elkhorn-based charity in 2006.

According to Tyson, the goal of CWI is to offer care and support to orphans and widows in the African village of Ullo and the surrounding area. More than 250 widows have registered in programs established by CWI. The women need help to feed, cloth and educate their children. CWI seeks to break the cycle of poverty by offering education and help with community development.

The charity also sponsors programs in the Village of Mowazo, Haiti, which is in need of reconstruction after devastating earthquakes hit in recent years.

Both communities lack basic infrastructure, including clean water, healthcare and access to education.

To earn funds to support CWI’s programs, the Tysons organized the Lake Geneva Amazing Race.

The race lived up to its name, Tayson said.

Racers competed in events in Elkhorn, Delavan, Lake Geneva, Williams Bay, Fontana and Whitewater by attempting to earn points through competition in various physical and mental challenges, similar to hit CBS program.

According to Tyson, there were 25 challenges overall.

One challenge was the “Shopping in Reverse.” The racers arrived at Piggly Wiggly in Lake Geneva and found a grocery cart that had 20 items in it. Their task was to restock the items in the correct location in the store. The “Flavor of the Day” challenge had the racers buy the flavor of the day at Culver’s in Lake Geneva and find a stranger who was willing to have the ice cream fed to them.

At the Four Lakes Athletic Club in Elkhorn, racers completed a circuit training session that included covering specific distances on the elliptical and rowing machine. They also had to throw basketball free throws and three pointers and serve tennis balls.

An event at Kunes Country Ford in Delavan, racers participated in “The Price is Right.” In the showroom window were several vehicle stickers. Competitors had to run all over the lot to find the corresponding vehicle.

Another challenge was at 104.5 WSLD radio station in Whitewater, called “The Sound of Music,” which involved racers tuning into their musical abilities. They were given a CD that contained a variety of songs. Contestants needed to correctly name the artist, then write their own country song. When they arrived at the station, racers performed their new country song live on air.

The Amazing Race had a huge impact for the racers, local businesses and volunteers, according to Tyson.

“Now the funds raised will continue to make an impact for kids. It was an exciting event and I can’t wait to get more people involved next year,” he said.

The competition concluded at The Abbey Resort in Fontana with dinner for racers, volunteers and sponsors.

Racers Jenny Ray and Julie Nor making up, Team Form Impact, were announced this year’s first-place winner.

Team Form Impact received a prize of $2,000, which they can take in cash or put toward a vacation of their choice.

“While enjoyed by all involved, the greatest beneficiaries of the 2012 Geneva Lakes Amazing Race are those individuals, both locally and globally, who will benefit from the generosity of everyone who contributed to make this yearly event a memorable experience.” Tyson said.

Funds raised will go to the Tuberous Sclerosis Alliance and Children’s World Impact. The Tuberous Sclerosis Alliance provides support for individuals and families impacted by Tuberous Sclerosis Complex, as well as providing funding for research to find a cure for the disease.

CWI has ongoing projects in Haiti and Ghana, Africa, where funding will go towards the care of the impoverished, with a focus on building another school for 400 children in Haiti.

For more information about the charities, upcoming fundraisers, or to make a donation, visit  www.childrensworldimpact.org and www.tsalliance.org.

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