We would like to express our gratitude to the Holiday Inn Express in Howe, IN for their wonderful accommodations for the team.
We started our day by visiting the Boys and Girls Club in Sturgis, Michigan.
Students participated by drawing wonderful artwork sharing what peace and harmony means to them.
Santiva talked to students about the importance of peace and the message of the Peace Run, that peace begins in the heart of each person and from there it spreads to our families, communities and to the world at large.
We had the opportunity to show the students the video of the Peace Run visiting many countries around the world.
We did the heart exercise to feel peace in our hearts and repeated the motto of the run “Peace Begins with Me.”
It is always nice to feel peaceful at the beginning of our day.
Purnakama, a music teacher, teaching students the World Harmony Run song.
Kids happily doing the actions for the song.
Arpan giving clues to where he's from during our guessing game.
Finding NY in our map.
As we travel from city to city and country to country, we like recognizing citizens who are making a difference with their selfless service, kindness and compassion, inspiring others in their communities. Marsha shared with us why the BGC chose these two lucky recipients for the Torch Bearer Award Medal.
Volunteer Pam Keeslar.
Pam received the TBA medal for playing a major part of the BGC. She was instrumental in making the BGC a success by being a great mentor and a true ‘Patron of Peace’ by creating a space for students that was safe, positive, and inclusive. She has helped the children with ways to increase their understanding of people and to show compassion for others and always be positive no matter what. She also is a big supporter of The Leader in Me, which is a school program to develop skills and self-confidence to lead their lives and become successful. Pam just radiates a true sense of calm.
Student from Eastwood Elementary Kaylaisha H.
Kaylaisha received the TBA for being caring, responsible and gentle young lady.
She is always calm and friendly to everyone she meets. She gets along with everyone and shows real concern for the well-being of others. Forgiveness is an easy skill for her. Her smile, easy going and laidback nature puts people at ease.
Kaylaisha is a real example of a future leader who will no doubt make a great difference in the world.
Here Kaylaisha with Marsha and Mayor Mullins.
Showing friendship, congratulating her friend for receiving medal.
After the medal presentation, mayor Mullins spoke about the importance of peace in his life and his community, by emphasizing that peace calls for compromise, comprehension, and a desire to band together and work towards it and by practicing peace in our own lives is one of the first things we can do to make it happen. He said: “May we all work toward and contribute to the creation of peace. The creation of a just and equitable society begins with individual activities, but it also necessitates a group effort, as well as a readiness to face and resolve the problems that endanger it.
Together, let’s work to advance world peace”.
Then it was time to head outside to share the torch and make a wish for world peace and go for a ride in the peace train. Here is Mayor Mullins as the peace train engine.
Thank you to the BGC of Sturgis for receiving us.
Gratitude to Mayor Mullins for joining us and giving medals to recipients and last but not least to Mr. Sams, Karley Hull and Marsha Doberteen for coordinating the event at the BGC.
Our second ceremony of the day was to meet the President of the town of Edwardsburg, Mr. Dennis Peak and some friends that came to meet with us.
Mr. Peak shared with us that he was very happy that his town was part of this great event, since peace is very important to him. He said: “If I don’t have peace with myself, how can I have peace with my brother?”
At our arrival, Sarah Overgaard, treasurer, on behalf of the town of Edwardsburg, welcomed us with a goodie bag for all runners. That was very kind of them. Thank you so much!
When someone shares their kindness, it doesn’t only melt our hearts, but it makes us so happy and energizes us to keep going and share that happiness and joy with others, no matter how tired we get running! We appreciate it so much.
Jamini showing her goodie bag.
WSBT channel 22
Thank you to our friends of Edwardsburg for meeting with us today.
Time to head for our third ceremony of the day to Niles, Michigan. Here Brahmata is running her fastest so as not to miss ceremony. Great job!
Our third ceremony of the day was the YMCA in the city of Niles, where mayor Nick Shelton was waiting for us to welcome the peace torch on behalf of his city.
Santiva explained to the group of friends the purpose of the Peace Run, how we can all share inner peace, which starts with each of us. They asked very good questions, like how many miles we run each day and how some of us joined this wonderful event. We all agreed that what keeps all the runners coming back is the fact of sharing with people this wonderful message of the founder of the run, Sri Chinmoy, of peace and oneness. That regardless of our skin color or religion, we are all ONE WORLD FAMILY.
Sharika, our coordinator for the city of Niles chose two Torch-Bearer Award recipients. Janie Townsend, YMCA/ Summer My Way Partners and Programs Coordinator is honoured and recognized for the impact she has made in the community and for her service to the youth.
Mayor Nick Shelton is honoured for his dedicated service and passion for community building. He is also an accomplished and motivated entrepreneur.
Mayor Shelton reads proclamation declaring this day a Sri Chinmoy Oneness-Home Peace Run Day.
We thank the city of Niles for their heartfelt welcome and providing us with cookies, fruit, and water for all of us.
It was time to continue running for our fourth and last ceremony to the city of Buchanan. Almost there Bhadrika!
Mayor Denison spoke about the importance of peace; he said without peace we cannot achieve anything. He said that his city of Buchanan, Michigan, was a great place to have the Peace Run as it is the city with the most volunteer organizations in his state.
We asked the group of friends to guess which country we were from by giving them some clues. Here, Salil demonstrating the country he comes from.
Then we sang the Peace Run theme song written by founder of the Peace Run, Sri Chinmoy.
Our Italian team member fuelled up the torch in front of this cafe, even though she didn't have time to fuel herself with espresso.
When we stopped the van to pick up one of our runners, we just happened to park outside of the house of Mary Coleman. She said ,"You're the peace people! I saw you on TV, hold on a moment." she quickly came back with a huge smile and a kind donation for the run.
When we run through the midwest, the team always looks forward to visiting Fuller's Campground on Clear Lake in Michigan! They have kindly been providing free campsites (and delicious meals) for the team for over a decade and they have become very dear friends to us.
Kirsty and Mark are such kind hearted people and we are touched that they always take the time out of their extremely busy schedules to spend an evening with our team.
We were all so happy to spend some time in kayaks and canoes on Clear Lake.
A rare moment where Salil, our team captain, is able to put his feet up!
We enjoyed getting to know the newest member of the family, Mabel. Soon Mabel will have a sibling, so the next time we visit, there will be another new family member to meet!
They kindly treated us to ice cream which put a smile on all of our faces.
We gave them some of our Peace Run hats.
We ended the idyllic evening by singing some Peace Run songs.
Then we passed the Torch.
Thank you, Fuller's for making us feel like family!
We would like to express all our gratitude to our Peace Run RV for providing us with the tools to cook our delicious and nutritious meals during our month long journey.
We would like to thank everyone who received the peace torch today for their generosity, kindness and beautiful wishes for peace and oneness that each of them shared while holding the torch. We will carry those wishes with us throughout our journey.