little a triathlon

And as if one day of fundraising wasn't enough!

Maya headed out for a second consecutive day of fundraising at Pioneer Days in Palmer.  She brought with her photos of Maddy, a poster about the triathlon and a spirit that is enviable by all.  I just love it that kids are our greatest fundraisers for this event.

"little a"

The Triathlon

At it again in 2017!

Linnea and her family staffed the annual Little a Triathlon Lemonade stand.  For two days (in not the best weather, to boot!), she was out there selling lemonade and homemade baked goods and raising money for Natilynn.  We all feel so lucky in live in such a caring community!



A very touching Alaska Dispatch News piece by Charles Wohlforth and Eric Hill.

A short article printed in an Anchorage School District newsletter.

KTUU piece on Avery and the race here.

If you are going to listen to a single piece on the event, please listen to Annie Feidt's APRN piece; it simply nailed what we are doing with this event.

There will be prizes (57 total) for the finishers winning the categories below.  The top three males and females and the first place finishers in the team and age group categories below will receive medals that really are more pieces of functional art then just a medal.   They are designed and created by master potters Jacob Bera and Tony Perelli and can also be used as a wall hanging, a coaster or a trivet.  They are truly conversation pieces.

Top Three Overall Male and Female
Top Three Overall Teams
Top Three males and females in each age group

  • under 15
  • 15- 19
  • 20-29
  • 30-39
  • 40-49
  • 50-59
  • over 60

After the hair cut for wigs with a note for Avery =======>

Casey Kopkash is a middle-schooler from Lawrenceville, N.J.  She got her friends to help raise money for us by holding a triathlon of her own!  She is familiar with Avery's story and when she heard about Maddy and our triathlon, she wanted to help but could not talk her parents into a plane ticket to Alaska.  So, she decided to take to create a fund-raising event of her own.  

A 10 year old is simply showing us all how to live a full and giving life.  She donated her hair and raisied money for cancer research and treatment.  Half of her earnings went to the Canadian Cancer Society; meanwhile, she donated the other half of her earnings to the little a triathlon.  Her words and her efforts will leave you speechless.

link is here:

If you or someone you know wishes to volunteer for the event, please contact J.T. Lindholm at

The Triathlon

This triathlon is both a fundraising event and a memorial for Avery Lindholm.  She was a fun-loving, smart, and energetic child who was diagnosed with medulloblastoma type 3 (an aggressive form of brain cancer) at the age of 2 ½ .  She passed away 5 ½ months later, just days shy of her third birthday.  Even in her short life, she was always drawn to people and it only seems fitting that an event that gives back to others to make their lives better be done in her name.  Her mom, Adrienne, came to be known as "Big A" while Avery was always referred to as "little a."  To learn more about the girl known as “little a” feel free to read her obituary or see a slideshow that was played at her memorial service (links to them are below).  Of course, her dad, J.T., will talk about her with anyone who asks.

Avery's obituary can also be found here:

Avery's Slideshow from her memorial can also be found here:


Inspired and Inspiring

<=========  These four (Linnea, Kylar, Kael and Maya) spent an entire day near the South Fork Trailhead and raised over $200 for the Brandl's!  They also raised awareness about our event and really demonstrated what we are hoping to do: build community.  I am humbled by their efforts and so excited to have them on our team of volunteers!


In The News

Come take part in a truly unique and Alaskan event!  This event is both a fundraiser and a memorial event.  Funds raised from this event will go to a family with a child currently receiving treatment for cancer.  

Our 2017 recipient is Natilynn Matos and her family.  Natilynn was diagnosed with leukemia July 10, 2016. She turned 4 (in the hospital) on Sept 22. She will receive chemotherapy for about 2 1/2 years. The 5 year survival rate for her cancer is anywhere from 80-95%. Before she got sick you could find her outside climbing trees in a princess dress or zooming around the sidewalk on her scooter. She rarely complains about a thing aside from her tummy being sick or her legs hurting her. There are many times her family actually gains their strength from her; she is simply amazing. She has 3 brothers and 6 sisters, 5 of them are still at home with her. One of them is always by her side loving on her or making sure she doesn't need anything. Since she has been sick she spends most of her time on the couch. When she has the energy she is playing with play doh or playing barbies with her sisters.

Natilynn's facebook page or 

For past recipients, click here.

The event will start and finish at the Matanuska Lakes State Recreation Area (formerly known as Kepler-Bradley) at 10am on Saturday, June 25th, 2016.

Swim: 800 meters in Matanuska Lake (wetsuit strongly recommended)
Bike: 11 miles of off road biking
Run: 4 mile trail run​