TORONTO - The third-annual Campbell-Dickinson St. Patrick Run/Walk, set for March 16 and sponsored by the Toronto Coalition for Revitalization, once again will be a fundraiser for the Trinity Foundation's Trinity Emergency Assistance Relief Fund, according to organizers.
The event, which includes a 5K course for adult runners and walkers; and a 1K course for kids, is named for cancer survivor Jenny Russlee Dickinson, a teacher in Toronto, and the late attorney William "Pat" Campbell, according to George Komar, race organizer and coalition president.
"The Trinity T.E.A.R. Foundation is part of the Trinity Foundation Fund," said Komar, adding both Dickinson and Campbell received treatment at the Tony Teramana Cancer Center at Trinity Health System in Steubenville. "The foundation can act immediately to (financially) assist (cancer patients). The past two years we raised more than $30,000 for the T.E.A.R. Fund. We were told we gave the largest donation by any organization. We also are a nonprofit organization through the Community Foundation for the Ohio Valley."
The run/walk, sanctioned by the U.S.A. Track and Field Association, will begin with registration at 9 a.m. the day of the race at the TEMS Joint Ambulance District Headquarters, 201 S. Fourth St., Komar said.
"Last year we had more than 800 runners," said Komar. "This year we're hoping for 1,000 runners."
The course is mostly flat, and children begin at 11 a.m., with the adult runners beginning at 11:30 a.m. The adult walkers will begin shortly after.
Both first-place adult walkers and runners will receive medals categorized by age and gender, Komar said. Adult runners who register by March 2 will receive a free T-shirt and computer timing chip, while others registering early will receive T-shirts, he added.
Registration is $15 for adults before March 2 and $18 after; and $7 for children ages 1-10 before March 2 and $10 after; and students ages 11-18 is $10 by March 2; and $13 after. Registration forms can be downloaded or filed online at www.TheGemCity.org. Forms, along with a check payable to CFOV Cancer should be mailed to TCFR, P.O. Box 121, Toronto, OH 43964.
Komar also said those participating are welcome to solicit sponsors. Any funds from pledges solicited from participants should be in the form of a check payable to CFOV Cancer and mailed to the same address. After race expenses and some funds set aside for next year's race, Komar said the remainder will be split, with 75 percent of net proceeds going to the T.E.A.R. Foundation and 25 percent to the coalition. All donations and pledges are tax deductible, Komar added.
"The team competition includes two categories - one is for the largest team. The other is the team that raises the largest contribution," said Komar.
Also tied to the event this year will be a St. Baldrick's Day shave-off, while longer hair shaved will be donated to Locks of Love, an organization that provides wigs for children undergoing cancer treatment, Komar added. Participants solicit donations for the shave-off, which are in turn donated to St. Baldricks, said Komar. Those wishing to participate without sponsorship can pay $15, which also goes toward St. Baldricks, he added. Funds raised by St. Baldricks go toward childhood cancer research, said Komar. The shave-off will begin at 10:30 a.m. at the TEMS headquarters.
"There's a Toronto boy, Conner Sacripanti, who was a poster boy for St. Baldricks," said Komar. "He's now cancer-free as this time. He's a survivor."
The T.E.A.R. Foundation helps cancer patients with living and other expenses associated with treatments for the disease, including transportation costs, insurance and insurance co-payments, medical supplies, modest utility and mortgage assistance and even wigs or prosthetics, Komar said.
"We're still seeking (race) sponsors who can contribute from $50 to $500," said Komar. "Trinity Health System is providing student nurses from the Trinity School of Nursing as volunteers. We also want to thank Toronto for helping us stage his event."
Media partners for the event include the Herald-Star, The Weirton Daily Times, Comcast, WTOV-TV and WCDK-FM. For information, go to www.thegemcity.org or call (740) 544-6439.