By Katherine Klingseis, firstname.lastname@example.org
With the firing of a gun, 470 runners — the most in the event’s history — began the five-kilometer Hope Run through Ames to raise funds for the Israel Family Hospice House.
The run took place during Mary Greeley Fest, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Saturday at Bandshell Park. The events raise the public’s awareness of the services Mary Greeley Medical Center has to offer, as many of it’s services go unnoticed until needed.
About 10 minutes after the initial start, another group of runners began their journey down 5th Street. The run took the participants from Bandshell Park to the CyRide office and back again, with some reaching the finish line only to turn around and run the route again.
“It’s a gorgeous day and a really great route,” said Andrea Hammes Dodge, development coordinator at Mary Greeley Medical Center. “Last year was kind of gloomy and we didn’t have as many people, so I think the weather definitely helped this year.”
A countless number of volunteers packed into the registration tent, helping new and preregistered runners, and cheering on the runners at various spots along the route.
“We have a lot of really good volunteers,” Dodge said. “They know what they are doing.”
Two running clubs, Ames Area Running Club and Team Vardo, supplied volunteers to help with the technical details of the run, such as timing.
After the race, runners in each age group were given awards for placing in the event.
Hope Run Jr., a run for children under 10, began after the awards ceremony. Some younger children ran less than a block, while older children ran up to a mile.
Adults took advantage of free entertainment and medical screenings, while children were entertained by games and inflatable structures. Sapore Pizza cooked breakfast pizza for hungry runners and Cold Stone Creamery sold ice cream.
All participants left the park knowing Mary Greeley Medical Center is there to help.
(Originally posted on Iowastatedaily.com on June 19, 2010)