Hospital hosting annual color run

Published 2:24 pm Friday, September 5, 2014

Color me for a cause.

With so many shades of color, at least one of them is bound to stick at the Healthy Woman’s annual Wellness Challenge — a 5K run/walk.

The “Color Me For Down Syndrome” run is an untimed race, and everyone is a winner.  Participants will be covered from head to toe in a rainbow of colors at several intervals along the race in recognition of Down Syndrome Awareness Month.

This is the fifth annual wellness challenge sponsored by the Healthy Woman organization, and the third aimed at increasing awareness for Down syndrome and to promote happiness and acceptance in the lives of people with Down syndrome.

The National Buddy Walk Program was started in 1995, and has since grown to become the most widely recognized public awareness program for Down syndrome in the world.

Much like the Buddy Walk, the Healthy Woman 5k color run is aimed at promoting the acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome in the community.

“Healthy Woman has sponsored several 5K runs/walks,” said event coordinator Linda Holley.  “The Down Syndrome races have been our biggest events.”

For Holley, the event is one that is very near and dear to her heart.

“I have a granddaughter with Down syndrome, and she will be four this month,” Holley said. “You don’t realize what a Down syndrome child means to you until you have one in your family. They are the happiest and the most loving children you have ever seen, and they are such a blessing.”

That happiness is the source of inspiration for Holley as far as the creation of the color run is concerned.

Sponsorships opportunities are available to area businesses from $75-$175.  All proceeds raised through sponsorships will be used to give to the National Down Syndrome Society.

As an untimed race, there is no pressure to exert oneself or even finish the race, although a special coloring ceremony is held upon completion of the run.

Participants of color runs aren’t necessarily concerned with posting record times or even getting a good workout, but are instead focused on having a good time and gathering for a common cause.

The cost of pre-registration is $20 if paid by Sept. 30, and $25 afterward.

Registered participants will receive a color packet for coloring themselves and other runners, a T-shirt, water, and other goodies.

Registration begins at 7 a.m., the race begins at 8 a.m. on Oct. 11.