The siren sounded and quite shortly thereafter, Christine Roalofs brought her dogs up the ramp from the Bering Sea then took a little left onto Front Street and finished the final mile of the 41st Iditarod. She was dressed, not surpisingly, in her windsuit and decked out with an ear-to-ear grin. By the green attire of folks lining the chute, it was without question St. Patrick’s Day. The parade to celebrate the Irish Holiday was about to begin but was delayed until Roalofs had signed in and accepted the Red Lantern Award presented by Wells Fargo.
Immediately upon planting her snow hook, Christine said, “I’ve got to go thanks my hero. He saved me a thousand times out there.” With that Christine took a few long strides the length of her gangline to wrap a single black leader in her arms. A hug wasn’t enough thank you, so add a little wrestling, loving roll on the ground and a smootch! Yes, she and many others have kissed their dogs under the arch.
After completing the bag check, Christine signed in and was then presented with the Red Lantern as a symbol of perseverance, diligence, determination, tenacity and commitment. Roalofs gave her dogs the credit, especially the single leader, Night Crawler.