On your mark, get set, race! Run for the Red, held by the Highland’s Chapter of the American Red Cross, is coming to Fayetteville. There are three options for the community: a 10K, 5K or a 1-mile family fun walk. The starting point is Ray Avenue near Festival Park and the finish line is inside the park, too.
Cash prizes and other awards will be given to winners and hands-only CPR instruction is being offered as well. There are usually bands performing but Lu Esposito, spokesperson for the regional communications office for the Red Cross in the triangle region, explains why they switched it up. “This year, we wanted something that would support the mission more and teaching the CPR so other people can learn how to save lives felt more appropriate.”
The event began seven years ago to raise money for Red Cross disaster relief. Overall, events like these help support the Red Cross’s mission, and because part of the mission is to help military members and their families, Esposito feels picking Fayetteville is especially perfect because of the town’s military base. The Highlands Chapter has been about saving lives and also offering courses on how to teach others to save lives. The services include recruiting donors for blood drives, giving assistance to families in every way possible, such as providing food, water, shelter or clothing after local disasters. Other than CPR, first aid, water safety and babysitting courses are taught. All these tasks are what Esposito enjoys about being with the Red Cross. “It’s so rewarding helping people from disasters and being that link to supplying blood and CPR training,” she said. She confirms it’s also rewarding to see the hard work pay off. “These are hard events to plan but it is rewarding to help people who need it. The events always end up being fun and seeing how many people support the mission is really great and worth it in the end.”
Prices and times vary for each type of race. The 10k begins at 7 a.m. It costs $35 to register. Ages 18 and under pay $25. At 7:15 a.m., the 5k starts. The cost to register is $30. Ages 18 and under pay $20. The fun 1-mile walk for all ages costs $5 to register and family members are encouraged to bring strollers. Military discounts are available. The last day to register online is August 1. It is suggested you register online. On-site registration may be available but it depends whether or not the event is full already. Keep in mind registration fees are non-refundable.
Cash prizes are awarded for the top three male and female runners over all. The first-, second- and third-place winner in each age group will also receive prizes. Age groups are 18-24, 25-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69 and 70 and up.
“I’m excited about this run being that it is in Fayetteville, which holds many service members. Red Cross loves and provides for the military and to see those service members come out and support us is very exciting. Service members and their families in Fayetteville know what we do with the military and it’s a beautiful thing to see both come together,” Esposito says.
T-shirts go to the first 750 participants who register by July 25. Extra T-shirts will be available for $8.00. Please, no pets, except service animals, are allowed. All of the race proceeds go directly to the Red Cross.
To find out more about the race and the Highlands chapter visit: redcross.org/nc/Fayetteville or call 910-867-8151. You can also email them at RunfortheRedHighlands@redcross.org.