My husband and I volunteered for this year’s John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon. Our job was to direct traffic in the larger $5 parking lot near the start of the race while another individual collected money at the entrance. By 11 a.m., the lot was full, so we walked over to the start of the race and were immediately surrounded by the hundreds of excited viewers and participants.

In all this chaos a man walked up to me, tapped me on the shoulder, smiled, and handed me $3.

“What the heck is this for,” I asked.

It turned out he had entered the lot and didn’t have correct change, only $2. But because of my bright yellow jacket and gold University of Minnesota Duluth stocking cap, he recognized me in the crowd and so good-naturedly gave me the money to “clear (his) debt.” My husband and I both laughed at the encounter. For the rest of the event, it put a smile on my face.

I took the “big bucks” into Billy’s Bar, plopped it down on the registration table, and all “liens” were paid off.

You have some nice, honest folks up there in Duluth. I think we’ll be back next year to volunteer!

Gaila Hagg Olsen

Black Earth, Wisconsin