By Meg Peters
The grounds of Scripp’s Mansion are rarely open for the community to explore.
On May 16 a scenic race that will start and finish at throughout the historical campus invites runners, walkers and their supporting family and friends to peruse the outdoor 135-acre grounds while raising money for the Guest House mission.
‘There’s a reason why you can’t just enter the Guest House facility,? Lisa Drummond, special events coordinator and donor relations manager, said.
The reason is the guests within the treatment center.
‘Our goal is to get them back to their religious life,? she explained, although the grounds are more than alluring.
Guest House provides treatment to Catholic clergy for a range of addictions, from alcohol to food, hoarding to shopping.
With both a men’s and women’s campus on the grounds, the international business invites men and women from around the world to seek a 60 day to 90 day treatment program, with certified medical professionals, therapists and volunteers on hand to make treatment a healthier reality for guests.
The Run Over Addiction 5K will not only? provide a scenic course over the grounds but will also offer entertainment for non-racers, including a bounce house, a show by local gymnasts from FlipSpot, music, exhibitor booths and refreshments after the race. Part of the funding will help restore Guest House amenities, and the lot of it will fund the extensive program guests undergo.?
Check-in will begin at 7 a.m. May 16, and the race will start at 9 a.m. Racers must pre-register online athttp://guesthouse.org/event/run-over-addiction-5k-walkrun/. The course is USATF certified and endorsed by Pure Michigan FITness and the Governor’s council, Drummond noted, giving the opportunity for racers to log their miles and enter a lottery to run over the Mackinac Bridge later this summer.
Funding for Guest House is very important.
‘When a priest or nun comes here, and they can’t pay, we pick up the tab, we don’t turn anyone away,? Drummond said.
Donors provide for 40 percent of the program funding, and Guest House is always gram funding, and Guest House is always looking for more sponsors, which Drummond is hoping will increase after the community has more chances to enter the facility. Programs include workshops, such as Walking With the Wounded and My Brother’s Keeper, seminars, retreats, alumni reunions, and before and after care services. Treatment programs include intervention assistance programs, holistic programs, weight management, and Recovery Residence if recommended.
While the public will not be permitted to enter the Scripp’s Mansion, nor any of the Guest House facilities due to privacy regulations, Drummond is working to host more internal events at the mansion in the future.
‘It’s important for the community to learn what goes on in here, to know that this important work is being done right in their community,? she said.
The men’s facility, which was housed in Rochester, Minnesota until Guest House opened the new men’s facility in Lake Orion last fall, hosts up to 16 men. The women’s facility can host between 10 women. Villa’s around campus can hold up to six more guests, and patients can even utilize an after-care program, hosted on the second floor within Scripp’s Mansion, for extra time after their program if needed.
The race will, however, introduce the community to stunning features outside of the many buildings. From the outdoor chapel, to fantastic statuary from the Norman Revival era, fountains and immaculate landscaping, runners and walkers will not be bored.
The race begins under the arches of the once carriage house, ventures through campus, runs along Joslyn Rd. to the bike path along Clarkston Rd., hooks up with the Polly Ann Trail, utilizes parts of Scripps Rd. and winds back through the main entrance of Guest House.
Drummond is hoping guests will participate too.
‘I know in the past one of our woman clergy walked the race, and when she came here she could not walk very far, which was amazing,? she said. ‘So we’re hoping some of our guests will walk and run as well.??
Several years ago Guest House International, an arm of Guest House, hosted Harvest Dash, also offered the property up to runners to raise funds for the international outreach program. This inspired Drummond to create the first Run Over Addiction 5K, which she plans to make an annual event.
Everybody who runs in the May 16 race will receive a t-shirt, a cinch bag of goodies, refreshments, and a medal for participating. One first place women’s runner and men’s runner will take home the championship.
Guest House also has other fundraising opportunities the community can partake in, such as the 30th’Annual Guest House Golf Classic coming up on June 15, and the 57th’Annual Detroit Bishop’s Dinner October 15. For more information visitguesthouse.org.
A little history
The Scripp’s Mansion was built between 1926 and 1927, and specialized in agricultural innovation under the owner William E. Scripps.?
James Scripps, William’s father, started The Detroit Evening News, which William took over in 1947 as publisher. Apart from his achievements in Lake Orion, William Scripps is also credited with the development of aerial photography, the first radio commercial station WWJ, and the first radio broadcasts by plane.?
When he died in 1952, the 3,800 acre property was divided, including property in the township’s Civic Center Park, Oakland County’s Orion Oaks Park, and the Bald Mountain State Recreation Area. Farm buildings and employee housing was later incorporated into Canterbury Village.
The Scripp’s property was purchased by Austin Ripley in 1956 and started the treatment facility, Guest House, in conjunction with Edward Cardinal Mooney and the Archdiocese of Detroit.
Guest House is internationally recognized as the first North American provider to Catholic clergy afflicted with addictive behaviors by offering medical treatment, housing and long term support after program treatment.
By Meg Peters