OPINION — Little moments of community bring big smiles

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KERRI THORESON/Press Idaho State Police troopers Michelle Brostmeyer, front, and Cody Ercanbrack dance during the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure at North Idaho College on Saturday.

Bright and early Saturday morning, the skies cleared — or at least stopped dripping rain — just in time for the Race for the Cure event at North Idaho College. A couple hundred breast cancer survivors and their enthusiastic family and friends donned all manner of pink attire to run or walk the 5K fundraising event for the Susan G. Komen cancer charity.

I had the pleasure of emceeing the pre-race program with a figurative shopping cart full of fun assistance to get the crowd warmed up. Mikki Stevens and her pinkalicious posse of Red Hot Mamas were perky and just perfect to chase the rain clouds away. I’ve known Mikki since high school and she’s spent a lifetime bringing joy and merriment wherever she goes. She’s a warrior and an inspiration, fighting her own battle against the Big C.

So after the presentation of awards and the warm up for the crowd, the Mamas led a parade of participants to the starting line, where more dancing broke out prior to the ISP color guard presenting the colors for the singing of the national anthem by Alyssa Hersey. Much to the delight of everyone, two of the state police color guard, Michelle Brostmeyer and Cody Ercanbrack joined the crowd of dancers, busting some respectable moves in their dress uniforms.

I’ve always believed that what defines us as a community is less about big moments but the thousands of little moments like these ... when a smile sneaks up and we collectively think, “I love where I live.”

Thanks to all who provided multiple moments of gratitude on Saturday morning.

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The first day of autumn is Saturday, but good grief, the store shelves have been filled with Halloween and Thanksgiving decor for weeks. For those keeping score, there are 97 days until Christmas.

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Things to Do Highlights: Tonight, A Martini Affair to benefit Safe Passage Violence Prevention Center, 5:30-9:30 p.m. at Seasons Fresh Grill. 208-664-9303.

Thursday and Friday, Cabernet Cabaret with Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre at the Jacklin Arts Center, 7:30 p.m. “Love is ...” featuring Callie Cabe, Chuck Ethridge, Amy D’Orazi, Jonah Taylor and Jenny Twitchell. www.cdasummertheatre.com, 208-660-2958.

On Friday from 4-9 p.m., PARK(ing) It On Sherman 4th Annual Block Party, see the new parklet and colorful crosswalk. 1600 block of Sherman Avenue.

Family Promise of North Idaho Golf Scramble on Friday at The Links. 1 p.m. shotgun start. Info: www.familypromiseni.org,

Friday and Saturday: Downtown Coeur d’Alene Oktoberfest, Friday 4-9 p.m., Saturday noon to 9 p.m.

The 10th Annual Break the Silence — Suicide Awareness and Prevention Walk at Riverstone Park Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The 5K walk is hosted by the Suicide Prevention Action Network (SPAN) of North Idaho.

Coeur d’Alene Warrior Challenge, Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at McEuen Park. Idaho Army National Guard soldiers compete to be Top Spartan. Free activities for the family.

Saturday: North Idaho Cider’s Annual Oktoberfest Chili and Soup Cook-Off to benefit Kootenai Humane Society with live music. Noon to 7 p.m. info@northidahocider.com.

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Happy Birthday today to Steve Eller, Rich Kempton, Kara Fredekind, Debbie Sala, Jeanne Wright, Brock Morrow, Marshall Baltzell and Karen Lindbergh. Tomorrow Julie Chadderdon (60!), John Stevens, Craig Brosenne, Haley Walker, Joe Roope and George Balling put on their party hats. Friday Stacy Hudson, Dina Hourland, Cliff Slaney, Katherine Ekhoff and Haley Walker take another trip around the sun. Jerry Lyon, Vic Slater, Amy Reagan, Scott Livingston, Rosalyn Martin, George Beebe and my baby sister, Ronna Park are doing the birthday dance on Saturday, the first day of autumn. Celebrating on Sunday are Autumn Hanson, Craig Owens, Wendy Young, Patty Kilcup, Stacie McGrath, David Thompson, Sue Enright, Brian Harris, Denise Bechel and Madeline Singleton. On Monday Tracey Vaughn, Debbie Michalak, Justin Capaul, Steve Evert, Dorothy Benoit, Carlena Shove and Cathy Schaede unwrap their birthday presents. James Hagman, Susan Cliff, Beck Jacobsen, Brenda Watkins, Gladys Sullivan, Michael McGee, Ronald Schlepp, Rebecca Greer, Marcia Hughes, Cheryl Snyder, Cate Kuhlmann, Teri Oliver and Charlie Taranto will blow out the birthday candles on Sept. 25.

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Kerri Rankin Thoreson is a member of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists and the former publisher of the Post Falls Tribune. Main Street appears every Wednesday in The Press and Kerri can be contacted on Facebook or via email mainstreet@cdapress.com. Follow her on Twitter @kerrithoreson.

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