GECKO racing inspires love and a wedding in Pagosa Springs

Photo courtesy Susan Valkar Susan Valkar and Chris Limongelli celebrating their engagement in Pagosa Springs.

Photo courtesy Susan Valkar
Susan Valkar and Chris Limongelli celebrating their engagement in Pagosa Springs.

By Kirsten Le Roux
Special to The SUN

In this season of family, love and joy, it is always heartwarming to be reminded of the special place that Pagosa Springs holds for many couples.

Local charity GECKO (Giving Every Child Knowledge of the Outdoors) is part of one story unfolding this week.

GECKO raises funds for outdoor programs and scholarships by staging athletic events in Pagosa Springs throughout the year. Oftentimes, the personal stories from these events extend far beyond just a trail run or a sprint triathlon. For GECKO, it is gratifying to be part of these and to weave these golden threads into the GECKO narrative.

One such story is of Susan Valkar and Chris Limongelli, who are celebrating their wedding day in Pagosa Springs this weekend and are starting their day with their entire wedding party participating in the Sweaty Santa Fun Run in the morning. Valkar and Limongelli sent GECKO this letter earlier this year and it’s a timely reminder of how our little town has a big heart and so much to offer.

“Dear GECKO:

“We are writing to say ‘thank you’ for playing a part in our love story. Chris and I met 5 years ago when working … in Scottsdale, Arizona. We were great friends for two years when Chris encouraged me to sign up to run my first marathon in Chicago … little did I know when I signed up that one short month later he would ask me out and we would end up running the marathon together!

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This story was posted on December 3, 2015.