The sun was shining brightly on Saturday morning, when over 110 participants gathered on the National Mall for SLEEP WALK 2012 to raise awareness about narcolepsy and healthy sleep for all during National Sleep Awareness Week.

The festivities began at the Sylvan Theater at the base of the Washington Monument.  Participants received t-shirts, awareness wristbands and program materials.

Representatives of the media attended SLEEP WALK 2012 to accept Media Star Awards for excellence in narcolepsy coverage in 2011.  I AM Modern Magazine’s Editor-In-Chief, Ali Vonal gave a few words about the courage of people with narcolepsy inspiring others.  Lauren Dunn of NBC Universal reflected that, in her past ten years of journalism, this was the first time she’d covered narcolepsy. It was an honor to have these media representatives at SLEEP WALK 2012 – as they are true leaders in raising media awareness.

The Cavnar Family accepting AVALON Magazine’s Media Star award on behalf of Editor-In-Chief Linda Black who was unable to attend.

Many participants brought impressive sleep-related signs for the Sprit Award Contest.  Congratulations to the six individuals who won awards for creativity in raising awareness about sleep!

Before leaving on walk, participants warmed up with a Nia routine presented by local Nia instructors Suzworks’ Suzannah Weiss and Sue Dambrauskas. The routine was designed especially for the SLEEP WALK 2012 and had everyone smiling and dancing together.

Sleep walkers departed for the 2.5 mile walk  – walking on sunshine along the National Mall past the famous Smithsonian museums.

Walkers stopped at the half way mark – in front of the U.S. Capitol Building for group photos. Then, the walk looped back to conclude at the Sylvan Theater. Upon returning, participants chatted and enjoyed light refreshments.

Wake Up Narcolepsy would like to thank all the volunteers and participants who helped make SLEEP WALK 2012 a success. We hope to see you next year for SLEEP WALK 2013!