FREEDOM — A Rhode Island couple with longtime connections to Camp Calumet and the Reach the Beach relay race renewed their wedding vows at the camp during the race last week.
The Reebok Ragnar Reach the Beach Relay race took place from Sept. 14-15, with teams of six or 12 runners racing from Bretton Woods to Hampton Beach to raise money for charity. Camp Calumet is one of the programs that benefits from the fundraising event.
Sue and Tim Bruce, both 48, of Providence, R.I., celebrated their 10th anniversary on Sept. 14 by renewing their vows while they were at Reach the Beach’s transition No. 10, one of the many stops on the 200-mile relay race.
Both of their families have been involved with Calumet since the 1960s, and Sue and Tim were campers in the 1970s. Calumet, which is part of a Lutheran ministry in New England, is a summer camp and vacation and retreat spot on the shore of Ossipee Lake. It also offers year-round programing and a conference center.
"Tim and I first met during the summer of 1987 when we were both working on staff," said Sue, adding they went their separate ways in their 20s but kept in touch when she moved to Montana and he went to Massachusetts.
"In 2003, we reconnected through the Calumet alumni association," she said. "Long story short, we moved to Providence, R.I., together in 2004 and married at Calumet on Sept. 14, 2008."
The couple has been part of Calumet’s Reach the Beach (RTB) running team since 2013. She said this year's race was "really fun." They renewed their vows after the first leg of the three they ran for a total of about 17 miles.
"Each year 72 of us run with the goal of raising money to help kids go to camp regardless of their family’s finances," Sue said. "This year our goal is $109,000! Because our 10-year wedding anniversary fell on the same day Calumet was transition No. 10 of RTB, we thought it would be fun to renew our vows at the same place we were married 10 years ago to the day, it was a blast!"
The fundraising will help children attend camp who otherwise couldn't afford it.
"Calumet is an amazing place where everyone is welcome," she said.
To find out more or make a donation, go to tinyurl.com/rtb-bruce.