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By Cpl. Nathan Knapke, Marine Corps Base Hawaii
The May 19, 2014 Nuupia Ponds Fun Run marked the beginning of the 101 Days of Summer program, which promotes a safe and drug-free lifestyle.
Runners stepped off in the mild morning air at 7 a.m. They ran the entire Nuupia Ponds route, which is approximately four miles.
Marine and sailors competed for points in the summer competition to help their unit earn prizes. The more service members a unit has participate, the more points they earn. Several units, including Headquarters Battalion, Marine Aircraft Group 24, 21st Dental Company, Marine Light Attack Helicop-ter Squadron 367, Marine Corps Air Station Kaneohe Bay and Fleet Logistics Support Squadron 51, brought guidons for extra points to help their units.
“This was a great way to start of the 101 Days of Summer,” said Stephen Martin, a war center supervi-sor for Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 24 and 32-year-old native of Williamson, Mich. “There was some really good participation from several units throughout base.”
Approximately 500 service members participated in this year’s initial run, compared to 100 at last year’s ﬁnal pond run. Some said due to the increase in participants, the competition level really escalated.“This was my ﬁrst pond run,” said Gregory Amburgey, an Aircraft, Rescue and Fire Fighting ﬁreﬁghter from MCAS Kaneohe Bay. “I really enjoyed how competitive all the units were. It was a fun run. It’s also better to run around the ponds because the terrain keeps it interesting. I could run around the ponds every day, but I’m just happy I could come out to show my support for my unit.”
This year Semper Fit and the Substance Abuse Counseling Center will feature runs, swim meets and other tournaments. Units can also earn points in various activities such as health promotion classes. The top three large and small units with the most points at the end of the 101 Days of Summer will earn money for their unit fund. The unit with the most points will earn $750, second place will earn $500 and third place will earn $250. Once all points are calculated, the winning units will be contacted.