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Tribal members sweat for recovery at third annual walk/run

HOLLYWOOD — In the moments before dawn on Sept. 8, 53 ambitious and dedicated people gathered at T.Y. Park in Hollywood to exert themselves over 5 kilometers before the heat of the day. The third annual 5K Sprint/Stroll for Recovery included runners and walkers from 18-57 years old, with a few children tagging along as well.

“This beat our expectations,” said Helene Buster, director of Family Services. “We had 30 people last year, and we hoped for 50 this year.”

Participants in the 5K included members of Seminoles in Recovery, family, friends and Tribal employees. The event raised funds for the annual Florida Native American Recovery Convention, which will be held for the fifth time from Feb. 28 through March 3, 2013 in Clewiston. Seminoles in Recovery sponsors the convention, and the 5K event raised about $700 toward it. The Family Services Department sponsors other fundraising events throughout the year as well.

“I’ve been to every one of these,” said Steve Osceola, of Hollywood. “It’s a fundraiser for the convention, which is a good cause. I wish I could do this every Saturday morning. It promotes health and is for a good cause. I’m a big supporter.”

Seminoles in Recovery provides a support mechanism for individuals involved in the recovery process to succeed in their goals and live a happy and prosperous life. Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous hold weekly meetings at the sober houses in Big Cypress and Brighton and at the Tribal Headquarters Auditorium in Hollywood.

“I’m not involved with [Seminoles in Recovery], but I’m a full supporter of the good they do,” said Mitch Osceola, of Hollywood. “The event was a success and a good way to draw awareness to the cause. It’s a good fellowship with the Tribe, and it’s good to see old friends I haven’t seen in a while.”

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Race results
Adult runners: 1. Tyler Bell; 2. Guillermo Garcia; 3. Pete Osceola III.
Adult walkers: 1. Christina Anderson; 2. Eric Gurfein; 3. Jason Lee Billie.
Senior runners: 1. Tony King; 2. Helene Buster.

Beverly Bidney
Beverly Bidney has been a reporter and photographer for The Seminole Tribune since 2012. During her career, she has worked at various newspapers around the country including the Muskogee Phoenix in Oklahoma, Miami Herald, Associated Press, USA Today and other publications nationwide. A NAJA award winning journalist, she has covered just about everything over the years and is an advocate for a strong press. Contact her at

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