Dr. Eliot W. Edwards
Ms. Kathy Pierce
My name is Craig Peterson. I am in my second and final year of a Naturopathic Medicine residency at Cancer Treatment Centers of America’s hospital located in Zion, Illinois.
Growing up in the Midwest I used to cross country ski for phys ed class in high school. I always enjoyed the opportunity to get outside and out of school. In my college years, I discovered running, initially for health reasons, but that quickly changed and I started to set lofty goals that included a few marathons. Once on this path, I started to experiment with team triathlons and wilderness adventure racing while living in New Zealand.
As a natural course and coupled with my love of the outdoors and passion for wellness and teaching, I found myself in a 10 year career in outdoor education that allowed me to travel the world and my heart.
In 2002, I returned to live in northern Minnesota to be closer to my family. During that time, my father had received two organ transplants, a heart from an unknown donor and a kidney from his youngest sister.
While there, I decided to seize the opportunity to live at our remote, and for a lack of better term, rustic family log cabin in the woods. In the warmer months, I was able to access the cabin by truck via a rough gravel road.
During the winter months, I needed another method; I chose cross country skiing. I often think back to the 2 mile ski out every morning on my way to work. Each day I would be surprised with something new: deer, fox, or wolf tracks. I also remember a few occasions when I arrived a little late to work. Whatta ya gonna do, there may have been a few extra fresh inches of new snow that called me back up one of the hills to shush down again. If there is one thing that I have learned in life, it is this - you gotta take and make the time!
Since I have returned to the Midwest to complete my residency in naturopathic oncology, and with a little prodding from both my fiancé and some friends, I signed up for my first ski race…a ski marathon called the “Birkie” for short. I’ve always wanted to ski it, so I thought…. “What a great way to spend my winter!” When the forecast talks of snow, most folks at the hospital cringe…. I say, “the more the better!” Obviously, this is not a popular sentiment.
During one of my early morning training sessions, I had an idea that maybe I could inspire others to help generate funding for cancer patients and families, as well as, cancer research.
As a result I have connected with two charitable organizations:
•Assistance in Healthcare Program: 100% of your donation goes directly to a general fund where patients whom are experiencing financial difficulty can apply for assistance with non-medical related expenses.
•The Gateway for Cancer Research: 99 cents of every dollar received funds cancer research.
American Birkebeiner Cross Country Ski Marathon in Northern Wisconsin on February 23rd, 2013.
The largest cross country ski race in North America with approximately 10,000 marathon skiers.The classic race course is 54 kilometers (~33 miles) in length with a total vertical gain of approximately 1379 meters (4426 feet)!
Assistance in Healthcare: http://aihonline.org/About
The Gateway for Cancer Research and Team Demand: http://www.demandcurestoday.org/about-us
Cancer Treatment Centers of America http://www.cancercenter.com
American Birkebeiner: http://www.birkie.com
Please consider a tax deductible donation to either one or both of these charities:
Suggested donation levels
$1 for every kilometer
Choose your distance or sponsor all 54 kilometers! 54 km x $1.00 = $54.00
$0.50 for every kilometer
Choose your distance or the whole race! 54 km x $0.50 = $27.00
Create your own
Any level of donation is gratefully appreciated