Kathy Gonzales

Kathy Gonzales

Terry Fox run seeks participants

NANAIMO – Annual Terry Fox Run to support cancer research happens at Bowen Park Sunday (Sept. 14).

Organizers are tightening up their laces for the 34th annual Terry Fox Run.

The event, which supports cancer research and honours the man who attempted to run across Canada in 1980, starts and finishes at the Bowen Park Activity Centre on Sunday (Sept. 14).

This year the run will be limited to two-kilometre and five-kilometre courses.

“There wasn’t a lot of participation last year in the 10K,” said Kathie van Doorn, event organizer and Terry Fox Run Foundation representative.

Last year’s event drew 200 participants, down from previous years, which have consistently drawn 250 to 350 runners. Van Doorn chalks last year’s lower participation to delays in promoting that event, but expects numbers to be back to normal for 2014.

“We have a lot of loyal people who come out every year,” van Doorn said.

The 2-km family walk circles through Bowen Park and the longer 5-km walk/run course takes runners through Buttertubs Marsh before returning to Bowen Park.

“It’s very scenic. It’s a very nice route,” van Doorn said.

Nanaimo Fire Rescue will have a fire truck on hand to entertain children, and fruit and cupcakes baked at Vancouver Island University from ingredients supplied by Country Grocer will be given to participants.

Participants raise money by making personal donations or raising pledges from sponsors.

“I think what I’m most proud of is 88 cents of every dollar raised [from the Terry Fox Run] goes toward cancer research,” van Doorn said.

That means van Doorn has no operating budget and that all supplies and activities are courtesy donations and volunteers. The city also partners with the foundation to host the run.

Van Doorn is currently looking for more volunteers to do everything from helping set up the event to acting as course marshals.

The run starts at 10 a.m. Registration opens at 9 a.m.

To learn more or participate as a runner or volunteer, please contact van Doorn at 250-756-2797.

For more info about the foundation, please visit www.terryfox.org.