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Tara's Take: An Adventure Update!

By: Tara Wheeler
By: Tara Wheeler

Lots to tell you all about! I've finally learned all of the steps to my Critter Ball Rumba, had the exciting honor of playing in a charity ice hockey game with NHL legends, and had an unfortunate accident that may keep me out of the Tough Mudder... for this year (not hockey related).

Lots to tell you all about! I've finally learned all of the steps to my Critter Ball Rumba, had the exciting honor of playing in a charity ice hockey game with NHL legends, and had an unfortunate accident that may keep me out of the Tough Mudder... for this year (not hockey related).

First: Critter Ball

Gary and his wife Donna have worked so hard to teach me the Rumba number for October's Critter Ball which is Charlottesville's version of "Dancing With The Stars" (look, ma! I'm a STAR!) and raises money for the SPCA. Donna's met up with Gary and I at rehearsals to show me the female steps of the routine (I'm a visual learner). Gary has worked out times and places for us to practice all over town from ACAC to alumni hall, in the early morning and after I finish anchoring the 10pm news. We are serious about the competition! Speaking of the competition, check out my fellow Critter Ball competitors. Vote for me!!! 

Next: The Dave Fay Memorial Hockey Game

Dave Fay was a longtime Washington Times beat writer who died of cancer in 2007. Since his death, a charity hockey game has been held to raise money for Hockey Fights Cancer. There's a silent auction, and special guest players like Washington Capital alumni and hundreds of people come out to the Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Arlington, VA to show their support. Two years ago I was invited to play goalie for one period during the game and I was so excited to be asked back again this year.

The game was SO much fun! I played the second period and was excited to take shots from Caps greats. I even got an assist! As a goalie, that's pretty tough and I can count on one hand how many times my name has ever been called as a point scorer.

My favorite part of the game though came when one of the players attempted a "Gordie Howe Hat Trick". For those that don't know, a GHHT is a goal, an assist and a fight all in one game.. and this particular fella had all but the fight. So, one of the former NHL tough guys tapped him, they dropped their gloves and prepared to face off... then suddenly broke into an intense "rock paper scissors" battle. It was hilarious! The event raised a little over $5,000 towards the fight against cancer!

Finally: Tough Mudder May Have to Wait...

Many of you may have noticed I was gone for about a week recently. Here's what happened: I had some major complications from breaking my nose (went white-water rafting and smashed myself in the face with my own paddle... graceful, right?). Long story short, I ended up needing surgery and the doc says I can't do any heavy exercising until mid September. With the Tough Mudder being held at the end of October, it would take a miracle to be in peak physical shape for the incredibly challenging event in time. Melanie Neimann is my wing-man as well so it looks like we will both sit it out and instead train for next year's event. It's a bummer but I'm thinking positive and looking ahead!

Until next time!

 

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