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home : sports & recreation : sports & recreation August 18, 2017

4/18/2017 1:31:00 PM
Rotary track meet on tap for April 29

Work on the revamped track amenities at Sisters High School are on a go-fast schedule with the Rotary Invitational track meet set for 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 29.

A longtime and popular fixture of the track season, the Invitational was put on hiatus when the track closed. Completion of the improvements means local Rotarians and a cadre of community volunteers will don the blue Rotary vests and run the field events and the concession stand. Net proceeds from the concessions go to the track team.

The Rotary Invitational had its beginnings more than 20 years ago under the broad reaching scope of then-head-coach Bob Johnson. He was a star track athlete while at Oregon State University and had contacts all over the place, according to this year's meet co-organizer Mike Bidasolo. Johnson mentioned his idea to a Rotarian who brought it to the club members who in turn provided enthusiasm and support on the field and in the food stand.

For many Central Oregon athletes, the Rotary Invitational is their only opportunity to compete in a large, multi-school track meet. At least 12 schools will have their colors on the field, with three athletes from each school per event.

The meet boosted the journey of several athletes who went on to great things. Ashton Eaton and current NFL player Kellen Clemens made their mark in Sisters, as did several future Division 1 athletes.

"We help make memories for the kids," current Rotary Club President Rand Reitmann said. "Also, one side benefit is to help the track team raise money for equipment upgrades and uniforms. That is what Rotary does - giving back to the community."

Sisters' prom is scheduled for the same evening, so some athletes may be running faster and jumping higher and longer in order to finish in time for that event.

If you're interested in helping out on the day, contact Mike Bidasolo, 541-419-3737. The only experience needed is enthusiasm.

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