“Fired Up” Event Looking For More Runners

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by Gene Marrano

A first time event planned for next month in Roanoke is making a last minute plea for 5k and 10K runners, before that portion of the program is canceled.  “Fired Up for a Cure,” sponsored by Roanoke City Fire-EMS, will raise money to fight breast cancer, with proceeds from the scheduled footraces, a silent auction and other activities going to an organization that provides mammograms and pap smears to low-income women who otherwise can’t afford those services.

Tiffany Bradbury, the Fire Prevention Specialist for Roanoke Fire-EMS, says that unless they can convince more area runners to sign up by August 24 (for the September 24 event) they will have to cancel the footrace portion of the program.  Runners can register online at roanokeva.gov/playonline. There’s also a link on the starcitystriders.com website, which includes a calendar of all local footraces in the area and links to registration pages.

A nurse from Carilion and a Roanoke firefighter came up with the original idea for a breast cancer fundraiser, and “it’s kind of turned into a big thing,” said Bradbury, who left WSLS-10 to coordinate public relations for Roanoke Fire-EMS. In October many fire departments will wear pink on certain days to promote breast cancer awareness – something they will do in Roanoke City.

A 5K walk has now been included, to attract those not inclined to run. The 9 a.m. races start from the Roanoke Civic Center and end there, and include a portion of the Lick Run Greenway. Afterwards from 10:30 a.m. -3 p.m. there will be free child seat safety checks, a kids carnival and free ice skating from noon-3 p.m. at the Civic Center coliseum. Gold’s Gym will conduct a zumba class, with the $5 participation fee going to “Every Women’s Life” – a nonprofit that provides free mammograms to underinsured and uninsured women. Sign ups for mammograms will be held on September 24.

A portion of the day’s proceeds will go to the American Cancer Society as well. Free health screenings will be available on September 24th as well and pink t-shirts with the “Fired Up” logo will be available for sale.

“We’ve got a lot of stuff going on there,” said Bradbury. Carilion’s Lifeguard 10 helicopter will be on hand for the curious to take a look. The day is also designed as an early kickoff for fire prevention month in October, which has a theme this year of “protect your family from fire.” Look for a number of pink trucks in the Civic Center parking lot that day, symbolizing breast cancer awareness.

Roanoke’s fire safety trailer will be on hand, with batteries for smoke detectors available as well. Overall said Bradbury, Fired Up for a Cure is a “show of support for women and families that have battled breast cancer.”  The department has seen members lose their lives to cancer in recent years, one reason part of the proceeds will go to the American Cancer Society.

Bradbury said only a handful of runners had signed up as of last week; the 5K and 10K races need a combined minimum of 100 in order to proceed, since there are timers to pay and the like. “I guess it just wouldn’t make sense [financially otherwise].”  If the race is canceled, those that have signed up will get their money back, Bradbury assures. The 5K and 10K runs are $30 per person; the 5K walk is $20.

If the race has enough people sign up by August 24, registration online and on race day will continue until September 24. Bradbury would like to see a flurry of registration activity this week however, to ensure that the race will go on.  “[We’ve] been posting stuff up all over town,” said a hopeful Bradbury.

See the related Fired up for a Cure Facebook page as well.