On My Team16 announces changes to The Climb amid coronavirus pandemic

Local News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — The coronavirus pandemic has forced much of our lives to change. It’s also altered a number of charity races. The latest impacted: On My Team16’s The Climb. It’s going virtual!

This is the third year of the November event for On My Team16, which raises money to help pediatric cancer patients and their families through athletics.

The Climb is the non-profit’s biggest fundraiser. Last year, it helped them raise more than $55,000.

Typically, participants climb up 20 flights of stairs taking 338 steps inside the State Tower Building, the tallest building in Syracuse.

Each floor on the way up and down is dedicated to a Pediatric Oncology Patient (POP) who is either currently fighting their battle or who sadly passed away from cancer.

This year, you won’t run up the State Tower steps, but each floor will still be dedicated to our toughest Central New Yorkers.

My initial goal with The Climb was to really kind of honor the kids that are in our community battling cancer or who have sadly passed away from cancer, and just allow those kids and those families to see the community coming together climbing and raising money for them.

Jordan Zapisek, Founder of OMT16

For the week leading up to The Climb — Nov. 14 to Nov. 21 — you can run, walk, or step as much or as little as you want.

To keep our youngest cancer fighters involved, you can share your progress on social media by tagging #OnMyTeam16 on Twitter or Instagram.

“You can go on the stair master at the gym and take a picture or selfie of you with your mask on climbing the stairs,” said Zapisek.

This year, The Climb won’t come with a bib or registration cost, so the organization is taking a financial hit due to the pandemic and inability to climb in person as a community. Zapisek says it’s not about the money, it’s about showing these kids who are more isolated than ever, they have so much to keep fighting for.

“Just by climbing x amount of stairs, even if it’s a flight in your apartment building. I think it means so much and it’s gonna be a different experience for these kids but just to realize that in the midst of a pandemic people are still thinking about them,” she said.

If you’d like to learn more about The Climb or donate to On My Team16 you can visit their website.

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For more local news, follow Nicole Sommavilla on Twitter @NeSommavilla.

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