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Frequently asked questions about walk weekend

Written by on August 24, 2015 at 7:37 pm

Ahhh… the Cape Cod Sea Camps. Our home away from home during Challenge Walk MS weekend.

Friday's route will take us 20-miles from the Hyannis Village Green right up the driveway of the Sea Camps. You will be welcomed by a cheering squad and directed to the check-in tent. At the check-in tent, you will receive your cabin assignment and details on the evening's events.

Cape Cod Sea Camps

Welcome to the Cape Cod Sea Camps!


From there, the rest of the afternoon is yours to enjoy. Lounge in the sun with your team and a beer or a glass of wine. Make new friends under the Big Tent enjoying some snacks before dinner. Visit our incredible Medical Crew in the Medical Tent to soak your feet in an Epsom Salt Bath or to have your blisters tended to. Take a rest in your cabin. Get a massage.

After dinner, enjoy a slideshow of pictures taken by our talented photographers throughout the day, followed by our Evening Program. We strongly recommend attending the Evening Programs, especially on Saturday Night, which will contain our incredible Candlelight Ceremony.

(TIP: It can be dark at night, so you may want to bring a flashlight for getting around the Sea Camps after sundown.)

Below are some frequently asked questions:

Do we sleep in tents?

We do not. We sleep in cabins. The Sea Camps provides communal style sleeping accommodations with bunk beds. Every attempt was made by the NMSS to accommodate any special requests. (TIP: Bring ear-plugs — just in case you have a snoring neighbor.)

Cape Cod Sea Camps cabins

Welcome to your home for the weekend.

How does my luggage get to the Sea Camps?

On Friday morning, you will drop off your luggage at the designated luggage drop-off areas at Kalmus Beach or at the Hyannis Village Green. While on the route, your luggage will be transported to the Sea Camps and sorted by walker number. When you arrive at the Sea Camps, you will collect your bag and carry it to your cabin. For your convenience – and that of the crew members – please keep your luggage to under 40 lbs. If you need help carrying your luggage, find a crew member and they will be happy to help.

What are the bathroom / shower facilities like?

There are shared bathroom / shower houses located strategically around the Sea Camps. In addition, some of the cabins are equipped with bathrooms and showers. If there aren't any located in your cabin, there will be a bath house close by. (TIP: Bring flip-flops for the showers.)

Do I need to bring my own linens?

No, but you may choose to. The Sea Camps provides sheets, blankets, and pillows. They also provide towels – very small towels. Many participants bring a towel from home, and are glad they did.

Is there electricity?

Yes, all of the cabins have electricity. Don't forget your cell phone chargers!

Where do we eat?

A delicious breakfast, lunch (for crew and other participants at the Sea Camps mid-day), and dinner will be served at the Sea Camps Dining Hall. This is a wonderful opportunity to spend time with the new friends you will meet on the route. Make sure to note the start/end times for each meal which will be posted outside the Dining Hall — along with each day's menu.

Cape Cod Sea Camps dining

Cape Cod Sea Camps dining — mmm mmm good!

How do I get my luggage at the end of the weekend?

On Sunday morning, before you embark on the final 10-miles, you will drop off your luggage at a designated spot at the Sea Camps. While on the route, your luggage will travel back to Hyannis Village Green, for you to collect at the end of the Closing Ceremonies.

What if I have a question that was not answered here?

Don't hesitate to reach out to the Challenge Walk Staff at the National MS Society, Greater New England Chapter.

Thank you so much for your commitment to this event and to creating a World Free of MS.

See you bright and early in a few weeks at the Hyannis Village Green!

Amy has been participating in the MS Challenge Walk since 2002, in honor of her father, who was diagnosed the year before.  In 2007, she joined the Steering Committee. She feels blessed to be accompanied by such an amazing group of people in this fight against MS.  Amy lives in Lowell, Massachusetts with her husband, son, and daughter.

Start training!

Written by on July 16, 2015 at 10:34 am

Hello, Challengers!

I wanted to check in with you and see the status of your training. We are now eight weeks out from the Challenge Walk MS, and I thought I'd give you some motivational tips and information to keep you motivated!

To train correctly for this event, you need to progress slowly and listen to your body at all times. Begin by adjusting first the frequency of you walking, then the duration and finally the intensity. The essential components of a good walking program are warm-up, walk, cool-down, stretching and strength training.

Five Good Reasons to Start Walking (besides the MS Challenge Walk)

  1. Reduces cholesterol levels
  2. Decrease high blood pressure
  3. Reduces risk of heart disease
  4. Increase energy
  5. Decreases stress

Five Ways to Incorporate Walking into Your Daily Life

  1. Walk your dog (or someone else's dog — with permission, of course!)
  2. Take a pre- or post-dinner walk. This is a great time to just be by yourself or take along your family for some quality time with them!
  3. Skip the elevator and take the stairs
  4. Do errands on foot, or park in the rear of the parking lot and walk to the store
  5. Walk to work — even if you telecommute, take a half-hour each morning to do a lap around the neighborhood, ending at your "office"

Five Steps to Take to be Successful

  1. Make a commitment to yourself
  2. Reserve time in your schedule
  3. Create a habit first
  4. Establish your long and short term goals
  5. Reward yourself when you meet your goals (a new bestseller, tickets to a concert or play, etc)

Fitbit Challenge

Are you training with your Fitbit? Be sure to participate in our Fitbit Challenge by joining our Fitbit Group. Join other walkers training and walk to the number one spot!!

You should have received all your materials, if not please let me know. Keep up the hard work and check out our website for additional training information, including our training schedule guide.

Take care,

Danielle Paonessa
Development Coordinator
National MS Society

Danielle Paonessa is a development coordinator with the National MS Society. She works on four MS Walks around the Boston area and helps with the Challenge Walk. Danielle has a degree in Hospitality and Tourism Management from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and became interested in working in the non-profit industry after interning with Make-A-Wish her senior year of college.

Training begins today!

Written by on May 7, 2013 at 10:13 am

Hello, Challengers!

I wanted to check in with you and see the status of your training. We are now 18 weeks out from the MS Challenge Walk and I thought I'd give you some motivational tips and information to help get you going!

To train correctly for this event, you need to progress slowly and listen to your body at all times. First, begin by adjusting the frequency of you walking, then the duration and finally the intensity.  The essential components of a good walking program are warm-up, walk, cool-down, stretching and strength training. We have an 18-week training schedule you can follow that will get you ready for the walk, starting with a three-mile walk today!

Five Good Reasons to Start Walking (besides the MS Challenge Walk)

  1. Reduces cholesterol levels
  2. Decrease high blood pressure
  3. Reduces risk of heart disease
  4. Increase energy
  5. Decreases stress

Five Ways to Incorporate Walking into Your Daily Life

  1. Walk your dog (or someone else's dog — with permission, of course!)
  2. Take a pre- or post-dinner walk. This is a great time to just be by yourself or take along your family for some quality time with them!
  3. Skip the elevator and take the stairs
  4. Do errands on foot, or park in the rear of the parking lot and walk to the store
  5. Walk to work — even if you telecommute, take a half-hour each morning to do a lap around the neighborhood, ending at your "office"

Five Steps to Take to be Successful

  1. Make a commitment to yourself
  2. Reserve time in your schedule
  3. Create a habit first
  4. Establish your long and short term goals
  5. Reward yourself when you meet your goals (a new bestseller, tickets to a concert or play, etc)

Beginning in June, we will be hosting MS Challenge Walk Group Trainings. I'll keep you informed on those dates as we get closer to June!  As this is my first Challenge Walk, I will be training every step of the way with you all!

Registered walkers should have received all your materials in the mail by now; if you have not, please let me knowThe recommended training schedule is in your guide and located online on our website. It’s time to dust off those sneakers (if you haven’t already) and get moving!  Be sure to contact me if you have any questions, otherwise I’ll be in touch with you soon.

Aileen is the Director of Development for the Greater New England Chapter of the National MS Society responsible for the 2013 Challenge Walk. She has interned with the National MS Society at the Greater Delaware Valley Chapter with Program Events and is looking forward to working closely with the Steering Committee and Challenge Walk Teams to make this year's MS Challenge Walk a memorable one!

Training for those 50 miles

Written by on May 18, 2011 at 4:55 pm

If you live in Massachusetts like I do, the snow has cleared and it's time to start thinking about your walking program. Here are some motivational tips and information to help get you going.

To train correctly for this event, you need to progress slowly and listen to your body at all times. First, begin by adjusting the frequency of your walking: we have several training schedules available to help you build up your regularity. Then slowly increase the time spent walking, and then the speed, or intensity. Through it all, remember the essential steps of a good walking program are to warm-up, walk, cool-down, stretching and strength training.

Here are some other positive aspects and techniques to keep in mind:

Five Good Reasons to Start Walking (besides the MS Challenge Walk)

  1. Reduces cholesterol levels
  2. Decrease high blood pressure
  3. Reduces risk of heart disease
  4. Increase energy
  5. Decreases stress

Five Ways to Incorporate Walking into Your Daily Life

  1. Walk your dog (or someone else's dog — with permission, of course!)
  2. Take a pre- or post-dinner walk. This is a great time to just be by yourself or take along your family for some quality time with them!
  3. Skip the elevator and take the stairs
  4. Do errands on foot, or park in the rear of the parking lot and walk to the store
  5. Walk to work — even if you telecommute, take a half-hour each morning to do a lap around the neighborhood, ending at your "office"

Five Steps to Take to be Successful

  1. Make a commitment to yourself
  2. Reserve time in your schedule
  3. Create a habit first
  4. Establish your long and short term goals
  5. Reward yourself when you meet your goals (a new bestseller, tickets to a concert or play, etc)

It's time to dust off those sneakers (if you haven't already) and get moving!

Lori is the Executive Vice President of Resource Development for the Greater New England Chapter of the National MS Society. She has been with the Society for over 10 years. MS Challenge Walk holds a special place in her heart, and every year, it inspires her to continue her work on behalf of the 19,000 people with MS and their families the chapter supports.

Fundraising — flashbacks to childhood

Written by on August 19, 2009 at 11:30 am

If one were to describe my fundraising or selling skills, it might read something like,"Has difficulty asking for money even when the cause is noble; is too shy to barter even when in Mexico on vacation; required younger brother's assistance selling Girl Scout Cookies."

Trouble selling Girl Scout cookies! How bad is that? So here I am, about forty years later, preparing for my fifth Challenge Walk and proud member of the very successful Blister Buddies — and my knees still knock when I think about raising money.

So what kind of advice could this former Girl Scout and all round selling weenie have to offer?

  • Personalize the asking — My brother, sister, parents, aunt, and cousins all support me. I walk for Patty, my team captain; some of my family have met her, while others only know her story through me. I talk to them about MS and how it impacts Patty and those I've met at the Challenge Walk. Never forget how important it is to tell your MS story.
  • Have a bake sale — Even I can stand behind a table filled with homemade treats and make a sale. The Blister Buddies added a bake sale component to our annual yard sale this year, and not only did it add to the revenues — it slowed people down long enough to hear our story. I can't tell you the number of people who said "keep the change" when paying for a cookie or piece of cake.
  • Wear your message — I have a drawer full of MS shirts, hats, bags and pins. I wear them as often as I can, with the result that someone almost always asks about the event or the team.
  • It's okay to think small — Tens and twenties add up. Next year I plan to recruit people to have a yard sale with all or part of the proceeds going to MS. Our team has in-kind support from two printing companies, so I can provide my fundraising recruits with signage and other assistance. Bakes sales, dinners, similar functions all can be hosted by others to benefit MS; think about the number of new ears that will hear your MS story!

Fundraising isn't easy for most of us, so just remember that when you're telling your MS story, the listener can't hear your knees knocking!

Joan joined the MS Challenge Walk in 2004 when her friend and now Blister Buddies team captain, Patty Thorpe registered to walk. Patty, diagnosed with MS over 10 years ago, shared her diagnosis with Joan early on in their friendship. The undertaking of that first Challenge Walk and the three that followed not only strengthened Patty's and Joan's friendship, it began an MS educational journey that continues well after mile fifty each year.