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, females and teams as well as first place in the age group categories below will receive prizes or medals.  Our awards range from gifts from our spnosors to pieces of functional art.   Our medals are designed and created by master potters Jacob Bera and Tony Perelli and are truly conversation pieces.

Top Three Overall Male and Female
Top Three Overall Teams
Top 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

For the race in 2018, there have already been many generous donations to the race to to Avery's spirit.  Artist Tony Perelli has created a gorgeous wooden bench in Avery's honor.  He received permission to place it in Spirit Park in Eagle River, a park that Avery visited often.  You can read more about the bench and the artist here:

Scott and Becky Hauser have also donated a chair from the old Chair One at Alyeska.  The chair will be auctioned off and all the proceeds will go towards Jazee's medical care.

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.  

The event will start and finish at the Matanuska Lakes State Recreation Area (formerly known as Kepler-Bradley) at 10am on Saturday, June 30th, 2018.

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

Our 2019 recipient is Phoenix Mendoza and his family.

From Phoenix's family:

Phoenix is our spunky, charismatic, happy 3 year old who is obsessed with anything Disney related, and his favorite character is Mr. Potato Head.  He loves to wrestle with his 2 big brothers Koko & Bubba, plus give his dog King a run for his money too.  In early June Pheonix had a high fever for 5 days straight and we couldn’t figure out what was going on.  After our 2nd trip to the pediatrician they suggested we head to the ER for further testing, and after many hours the Doctor came in and told us Phoenix’s white blood cell count was through the roof, and that he could be looking at Cancer.  After being admitted to The Children’s Hospital at Providence, Phoenix underwent a bone marrow biopsy and was officially diagnosed on June 12, 2018 with High Risk Pre-B Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia or ALL.
We were beyond blown away from this and the next day Pheonix went into surgery to install his port and start Day 1 of chemotherapy and the start of the first phase, Induction.  After 29 days of chemo, spinal pokes, steroids and medications the doctors performed another bone marrow biopsy.  They came back with Zero cancer cells!!  Which allowed Phoenix to leave the hospital after a 35 day stay.
Phoenix is now in the next stage of his fight against Cancer.  There has been plenty of scary moments for this 3 year old, but it has been amazing to see Pheonix adjust and meet the fight head on!  This journey will be something we will take one day at a time and we were told his treatment end date is October 3, 2021.  He still has a long way to go but Phoenix Will Rise Above Cancer!!