Bucks for Charity – Final Two Weeks to Give

Today marks the start of the final two weeks of the 2018 Bucks for Charity campaign.  In four short weeks we have managed to raise $13,513.10, which is more than half of our goal!  As we enter the final stretch of this years’ campaign it is important to dig deep and support our local central Ohio community.  Make your pledge today by visiting https://bucksforcharity.osu.edu!

Thanks to everyone that has donated and participated in the Leadership Picture Match Game.  Also, a huge thanks to the volunteers who submitted the adorable photos.  Be sure to make your pledge and submit your matches today to be entered to win one of the five great prizes!  Winners will be contacted via email later this week and the big reveal of the picture matches will be included in next week’s CFAES Weekly Digest post.

As a reminder, the CFAES Bucks for Charity Halloween Social Hour will be held Tuesday, Oct. 30, 1:30 to 3 p.m. in the Agricultural Administration Building Auditorium.  For a small suggested donation of $5, join the CFAES Bucks for Charity Coordinators for an afternoon of Trick or Treat fun.  Participants will be entered to win one of 10 great prizes.  Wear your best (work appropriate) costume for an additional entry for raffle prizes.  All proceeds will go to Bucks for Charity.

Go Bucks and Go Bucks for Charity!

Fallfest Tailgate

It’s that time of year again when our alumni head back to campus to celebrate Ohio State’s Homecoming activities. CFAES is once again hosting our Fallfest Tailgate on Saturday, Oct. 6, 2018, and would like to invite faculty and staff to attend this annual event.

Tickets are $35 per guest and can be purchased with a personal credit card by phoning the Alumni Association Customer Service Center at 614-292-2281.  They are open from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.  Registration ends Wednesday, Sept. 26. We are sold out of game tickets, but still have room at the tailgate!

Note – We are moving back to the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center for this year’s event.  We hope to see you at the tailgate!  Direct any questions to CFAES-events@osu.edu.

Books and Brews: CFAES Alumni Society Scholarship Fundraiser

Join the CFAES Alumni Society for a unique and fun scholarship fundraiser at Land-Grant Brewing Company to not only network with fellow alums, but also raise money for CFAES scholarships!  The event takes place after the Career Expo so we hope to see many out-of-town alumni in attendance as well.

Click here for more information and to RSVP. You also can RSVP by emailing CFAESAlumni@osu.edu.

Pelotonia – A Personal Journey

Below is a testimonial from Benjamin Wenner, visiting assistant professor, Animal Sciences. He highlights his nine-year journey with Pelotonia. After his story, learn how to support Buckeye Team-CFAES Sustains Life as well as incentives for being a virtual rider.

My first year in Pelotonia started a bit differently than many of the people that I ride with every year now. Shooting the breeze with a couple friends, one of them asked me out of the blue if I wanted to do a 180-mile bike ride. Keeping in mind that I hadn’t biked more than 15 miles at a time in the past few years, the obvious answer was, “Sure, why not?” He proceeded to explain that there was a grassroots biking organization that rode to Athens and back to raise money for cancer research. As one of the worst kinds of ill-conceived bets, we goaded each other on to see who would crack first on this crazy endeavor. Little did I know we’d just signed up for one of my most life-changing experiences.

Neither one of us even owned a bike. He borrowed a 1980’s version from a friend, but I went all out and scoured Craigslist for weeks to settle on a 1970’s teal LeJeune Normandie in Newark, OH, for $125. My first real road bike was secured, just a couple months before I took the longest ride of my life through the Hocking Hills. I learned to ride on the road and signal to drivers, to change flat tires (old bikes seem to find those quickly), and to make friends with bike shops because something will always go wrong. Sure, we trained some, but ultimately it would prove not to be enough. Through the summer, I shared my story about riding for cancer research and learned just how many people around me had been affected by some sort of the disease. Stories about friends who had survived childhood cancer, colleagues who has lost family members, and even the cancer remission story for someone without whom I would never have followed my career path.

The first day of Pelotonia finally arrived, and I was nervous. I didn’t know what to expect, there were hundreds more people than I expected at the starting line, and I was struck with the realization of how much bigger Pelotonia was than a couple of guys beating a personal challenge and raising money for a “good cause”. What struck me more than anything else was the buzz all around us; these people were so excited to be here and to be a part of something bigger. The ride that year started through campus, went down near the medical center, and South out of Columbus on High Street. Growing up a Buckeye, I was used to seeing a lot of people lining the roads for events on campus; I didn’t think anything of it. But when we turned the corner and started seeing cancer patients and their families, I felt this rush of adrenaline I hadn’t known before. Here were these people cheering us on who didn’t know us but they knew (even better than I) what this event meant.  And the lines of people didn’t stop. Miles down the road there were still people camped out, holding signs or ringing bells. All of these people weren’t just cheering on one person, but a movement. Pelotonia provides funding for novel research, education, and clinical trials that would never be possible without that startup funding. More importantly, the event provides hope to the patients and their families, and the knowledge that a community is aware of their struggles against a faceless monster. And we care. The human element of compassion between people alone is so uplifting.

The ride was full of bumps for us. My crank fell off at mile 12 and we ran out of water a time or two. I remember when we passed the 40-mile mark and I commented that I’d never ridden farther than that. A woman nearby laughed and said, “Well, the rest of today will be interesting for you then.” We walked Starner Hill (and maybe a couple others) and a nasty thunderstorm left us drenched and nearly lost in Logan. Then we chanced upon another rider, out alone by herself. She was on the verge of quitting but we rode with her and shared our stories for what motivated us to keep riding. Completion of the ride was our only goal and the end felt like such a victory. At the end of a second hot and humid Ohio day, I had come to an important conclusion. Pelotonia isn’t just about fundraising but about the emotional experience of feeling like you can make a difference against something invisible but yet so horrible. As riders and fundraisers, we’re providing feedback to patients and their families that they’re not alone. We are all in this together, just like a peloton of riders shields each other from wind on the road and saves everyone a little energy along the way.

This year marks nine years for me riding in Pelotonia, and over $10,000 raised for cancer research. It seemed like a small effort when I started, but those $5 and $10 donations have added up to something amazing – over $160 million by over 8,300 riders! I am not a professional cyclist, but the wonderful thing about Pelotonia is that you don’t have to be good at biking or even enjoy biking to join this unique fundraising effort. In fact, you don’t even have to own a bike – you can be a volunteer or a virtual rider (fundraising but without the time commitment of riding) and your contributions are equally as important! You can donate to riders like myself who get daily encouragement on our training rides from the notifications when someone supports our efforts. Through Pelotonia, I’ve grown to love biking but what keeps me coming back every year are the new stories of survival, the fresh grief from the losses of friends, and the wonderful memories of the people around me. My friends know me as the one who’s not afraid to take on a crazy bet, because you never know where something as simple as a 180-mile challenge can take you.

Support Team Buckeye-CFAES Sustains Life

There are multiple ways to get involved and help fundraise for this important initiative. You can learn more about joining as a rider, a virtual rider, or as an event volunteer by visiting https://pelotonia.org/register/.

To be a virtual rider, all you need to do is raise $100. Or, you can pay the $100 yourself. Registration instructions are below. You also can help support Team Buckeye–CFAES Sustains Life by making a donation to the team. Click here to donate to the team or an individual member of the team.

Pelotonia Registration Instructions

Incentives for Virtual Riders

Did you know that if you can’t ride in Pelotonia 18, you can be a virtual rider or volunteer with Team Buckeye? Virtual riders participate by raising funds ($100 or more) without boarding a bike. All Team Buckeye virtual riders, which includes Team Buckeye-CFAES Sustains Life, will receive a T-shirt, and those who raise $250+ by Friday, Aug. 3 will be entered to win two tickets to a Big Ten Ohio State football game (game announced at a later date), including admission to the President’s Pregame Huddle.

Ohio Celebrates Another Raise Your Hand Campaign Victory

Thanks to everyone who supported National 4-H Council’s “Raise Your Hand” campaign. In all, 17,778 people raised their hand in support of Ohio 4-H youth programming!

Thank you to 4-H members, advisors, faculty, staff, alumni and county Extension offices for sharing the weekly updates and encouraging friends to vote for Ohio 4-H. And a special shout-out to Farm Cred MidAmerica, Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, Heartland Bank, Ohio Department of Agriculture and Ohio Cattleman’s Association for spreading the word.

The $20,000 prize will be shared by the counties with the most “hands raised.” Congratulations to the top five counties–Franklin, Licking, Wayne, Wood, and Butler–whose 4-H programs will each receive $2,000. The remaining prize money will be shared as indicated here.

Thank you for helping make the best better; #4HGrows in Ohio!

Campus Campaign – Last Day to Give

Campus Campaign ends today.  If you have already given – thank you so much!  If you have yet to make a donation this year, please consider making a gift to a cause you are passionate about.  This campaign is all about Ohio State faculty and staff coming together to make a difference in our world.  You can give to support any aspect of CFAES:

CFAES student scholarships (622310)
ATI student scholarships (303230)
ACEL’s Centennial Fund (483150)
AEDE’s Ag-Econ Fund (600033)
Animal Sciences Annual Fund (301895)
Entomology (306595)
Extension (306726) – or even choose a specific county office
Food Animal Health Research Program (308144)
Food Science and Technology (314335)
FABE (303027)
Farm Science Review (307837)
Horticulture & Crop Science (303108)
OARDC (307593)
Ohio 4-H Youth Development (310225)
Plant Pathology (302418)
School of Environment & Natural Resources (313978)
Stone Lab (308272)

And these are just the tip of the iceberg. Whatever you are passionate about, chances are that you can support that cause via Campus Campaign!

CFAES Alumni Society Scholarship Fundraiser

Please join CFAES alumni and friends at Land Grant Brewery Wednesday, May 23 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. 10% of every drink purchased will support scholarships for students in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Enjoy a great beer and do some good at the exact same time!

The Land Grant Brewery is located at 424 West Town Street in Columbus.

Click here for more information about the fundraising event.