(Editor's note: The author is a Novato native who used to shoot videos for Novato Patch. He is now a derivatives broker in San Francisco.)
If you've ever wandered by Marion Park on Wednesdays or Fridays around lunchtime, you've probably wondered what was going on. The short answer is ultimate Frisbee. It's a fascinating and demanding game that combines elements of soccer, basketball and football.
Here are the basics: Seven players work together to advance a disc down a field roughly the size of a football pitch. The offense moves the disc by throwing to their teammates. Once someone catches the disc, they stop running and toss it to someone else. Their goal: to throw a completion to a teammate in the end zone for a score. At this Novato meetup as well as pickup games and leagues around the world, ultimate is a highly spirited game.
Next month, athletes from around the Bay Area will participate in an annual fundraising event centered around ultimate and called Huck Cancer, an all-day tournament to raise money and awareness to fight cancer.
Cancer is a worthy opponent, and we have all been touched by it. My grandfather was diagnosed with lung cancer when I was a junior in college. My girlfriend lost her mother to cancer in the summer of 2011. This is, understandably, a very emotional tournament for all the players involved. I love doing it with people that I love that also want to make a difference in this fight.
Huck Cancer was born when my good friend Eric Arons was diagnosed with brain cancer. Eric is an extremely selfless man who I am happy to call my teammate. He partnered up with LIVESTRONG to bring us this signature fundraising event for our community. This event to benefits the LIVESTRONG Foundation, which funds complementary care programs nationwide. Last year, we raised more than $50,000 for them.
On March 9, I will be playing my heart out for anyone who has ever struggled with the disease. Are you wondering what you can do? Come play! Registration is open on the Huck Cancer website.
Here's the link to my donation page. Just click "Donate" and 100 percent of the net proceeds will go to LIVESTRONG, and any little bit helps!
There are BIG incentives to raise more than the $50 the tournament requires. If any player manages to pass the lofty $1,000 mark, any goal he or she scores is worth two points in the tournament. I cannot express to you how grand that would be!
If you're not up for playing but want to have a great day of spectating and picnicking in the park, go to the Crocker Amazon fields in San Francisco starting at 9 a.m March 9. Thank you for reading this and supporting a great cause.