TROY, AL. – Five Alpha Tau Omega fraternity brothers at Troy University are on their way to Spring Break in Panama City, Fla., and they're taking the long, hard way to get there.
They're backpacking from 130 miles from Troy to the coast. The group will hike from Troy to Panama City Beach, Fla., averaging about 20 miles each day. They are carrying all their supplies and equipment on the expedition and will camp along the route. They are planning to arrive in Panama City Beach on Wednesday, March 9.
TAO's goal is to draw awareness to and raise money for the Easter Seals' Camp ASCCA, which supports summer camp activities for children and adults in Alabama with special needs. The camp is located in Dadeville.
The students have raised money from businesses and individuals, said Kyle Crabtree, one of the event's organizers. State Farm Insurance is the group's title sponsor and Tahiti Tans, Momma Goldberg's and Red Bull are primary sponsors.
Crabtree, a junior broadcast journalism major from Dadeville, is joined on the hike by fraternity brothers Austin Bivins, a junior psychology major from Clanton, Jacob Laan, a senior criminal justice major from Ider, Matt Dobson, a freshman from Crestview, Fla., and Rick Dahrens, a sophomore psychology major from Hudson, Mass.
The group's route will take them down Alabama Highway 177, with stops along the way. The group will be in Enterprise Saturday, depending on the weather, from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., on Sunday in Hartford from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., in Esto, Fla., from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m., on Monday in Bonifay from 11 a.m. to Noon, and at Becton Pond (Vernon) from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m..
On Wednesday, the group will stop in Southport and Lynn Haven from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. and arrive at Pier Park in Panama City Beach at 4 p.m.
Crabtree said that the stops were intended as additional opportunities for people to come out and support Camp ASCCA.
For more information, video updates of the expedition and to donate visit the group's web site at www.walkhard.org.
INFORMATION SOURCE: ATO Fraternity