Pisgah United Methodist Church has participated in Lincolntonâ€™s CROP Walk for 20 years and some of its members havenâ€™t missed a single walk.
â€œThe first crop walk, we walked quite a many miles,â€ said Rachel Rhyne, a participant. â€œIt was just wonderful just to get to be with friends and enjoy the beauty of nature.â€
This yearâ€™s CROP Walk will take place Oct. 16 at S. Ray Lowder Elementary School. Registration begins at 2:30 p.m. and the walk starts at 3 p.m.
The CROP Walk raises money for the hungry, locally and around the world. This year, part of the proceeds will go to victims of Hurricane Katrina. Christian Ministryâ€™s LINC Meals program will receive 25 percent of funds raised.
The cause has been a good incentive for Rhyne and her group of friends to walk every year.
â€œTo think about others, thatâ€™s the main thing,â€ said Rhyne. â€œThatâ€™s what weâ€™re supposed to do, thatâ€™s the way the good Lord gets his work done â€“ through his people.â€
With that in mind, the group has no problem relishing their day of do-gooding.
â€œI enjoy it,â€ said Inez Starr, 78. â€œItâ€™s fun talking to all the people.â€
With 25 to 30 churches participating, the women are bound to run into friends, some going back 20 years.
â€œThe first time I walked, I just made a lot of friends, and Iâ€™ve kept those friendships,â€ said Naomi Ramsey, 87.
Over the years, the group has changed in some ways. For one thing, they take a shorter walk.
â€œWe donâ€™t walk fast. We just walk, talk and look at the houses,â€ said Gladys Rumfelt, 89.
After the walk is finished, the good times continue.
â€œWe come back (to Pisgah United Methodist Church), and they set up pizza and drinks,â€ said Rumfelt. â€œWe just have a party when we get back.â€
Some of the women credit this day of raising funds and having fun as a benefit to their well-being. A little exercise and socialization never hurt anyone.
â€œIâ€™m so grateful for my health, and I have energy and my love for doing things for others and my volunteer activities,â€ said Rhyne. â€œAll that keeps me running, keeps me going good.â€
by Sarah Grano