Xata Tackles Tough Mudder & Serves at Ronald McDonald House

The last week has been a busy one for Xata, both in the office and on our own personal time. Xata employees participated in both the grueling Tough Mudder event, as well as helped out for a night at our local Ronald McDonald House.

Tough Mudder — A challenge of a team’s strength

We had 34 Xata team members participate in the Tough Mudder event last weekend—a 10-12 mile obstacle course, covered in mud, fire, ice cold water and more.

Teammates have to help one another out to beat the obstacles, and Xata displayed some true teamwork! Ryan Barnett said that “team members were pulling each other over walls and serving as human ladders.”

Xata employees weren’t shy about getting down in the mud. From left to right: Dean Murdakes, Ryan Barnett, Jill Hansen, Jesse Chappell, Christian Schenk, Robert Norgren, Jesse Braasch and Rob Pallante.

While the Tough Mudder is mainly an event that you complete to earn your “orange headband” (your badge of honor), the Tough Mudder events have raised over $3 million for the Wounded Warrior Project. This money supports thousands of warriors returning home from the battlefield, providing combat stress recovery programs, adaptive sports programs, benefits counseling, employment services and more.

A Wounded Warrior team participates in every Tough Mudder event, just to remind all the other participants what the definition of ‘bad-ass’ really means. Our team members said that it was hard to complain about dragging yourself through the mud or up a steep incline when these inspiring team members are ahead of you, chugging along with no complaints.

Ronald McDonald House Night

Speaking of inspiring people… Xata members also served a “Cooks for Kids” meal at our local Ronald McDonald House this week, to over 100 family members living in the home while their children, siblings, nieces and nephews battled life-threatening illnesses nearby.

The house has 48 family accommodations for families that travel more than 60 miles from the Twin Cities to seek medical care. Many families come from all over the United States, and several other countries around the world. Families stay at the house as long as their child receives care for a life-threatening illness at a local hospital. Those who stay at the house while their child undergoes a bone marrow transplant stay for an average of 142 nights, while the average length of stay for non-transplant families is 20 nights.

No matter the length of stay for families, when you’re away from home for an extended period of time, you miss the little things like home cooked meals. I’m sure many of our readers out there understand that one, right? Well, volunteers team up to provide 9 home cooked meals a week to all the residents of the house. Dinner every night and brunch on Saturday and Sunday are brought in and served by teams of friends, students, companies and other organizations.

Xata employees doned their white aprons for a good cause. Front row, left to right: Tim Hackenmiller, Tony Poetz, Nikki Miller, Matt Srnec, Megan Mahoney, and Veronica Thomson. Back row, left to right: Lisa Boehm, Diane Hendricks, Kathryn Atterberry, and Miguel Ramos.

Xata team members had a great time preparing Sloppy Joes and lots of tasty desserts, and then serving the meal to all the brave children and families at the house. We also enjoyed a tour of the house which included a stop at the only 1-room schoolhouse in the state of Minnesota, and met the house dog, Jerry. While I would never wish a stay at this house on any family, if you have to spend some time in the Twin Cities for medical reasons, this is definitely a beautiful and friendly place to lay your head.

As we look forward to the coming months of philanthropic activity, where would you like to see Xata team members help out next?