Ocean City Today

Ocean City’s annual run/walk, Sat.

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 5K events in resort fundraiser for ACS
By Kara Hallissey | Oct 19, 2017

(Oct. 20, 2017) The seventh annual Ocean City Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 5K run and walk will take place this Saturday on the Boardwalk, benefitting the American Cancer Society.

“Join us to celebrate breast cancer survivors, pay tribute to loved ones lost, and raise funds to help fight for a world without cancer,” said Jamie Barrett, community development manager, Northeast Region of the American Cancer Society, Inc.

Those who want to compete in the 5K run can register on Saturday for $35, beginning at 7:30 a.m. in the inlet parking lot. A $20 donation is asked of walkers.

An opening ceremony will begin around 8 a.m. Guest speakers include Maryland Sen. Jim Mathias, Shawn Harman, owner of Fish Tales restaurant on 22nd Street in Ocean City, Del. Mary Beth Carozza, and Ocean Pines resident, Brandi Mellinger, will be sharing her survivor story.

DJ Rupe is slated to spin the tunes all day, and make sure to visit the tents set up in the inlet near the Boardwalk, which includes Pink Ribbon and Making Strides merchandise for sale.

Breast cancer survivors will be celebrated with their own tent full of activities, and a group photo will be taken before the race.

“We had a 30 percent increase in breast cancer survivors and should expect over 120 ladies,” Barrett said. “There will be a net of hope where people can write the names of loved ones who have passed away from cancer, or for those surviving their cancer fight.”

The 5K run will begin at 9 a.m. in the inlet lot near the Boardwalk and will be timed, with the walk starting 15 minutes later. The route takes participants down to 16th Street on the Boardwalk and back. Spectators and supporters are encouraged to attend.

“Every action we take moves us one step closer to a world without breast cancer,” Barrett said. “From research to education, prevention to diagnosis, and treatment to recovery, we provide support to everyone impacted by breast cancer.”

Awards will be given to the best overall runners and pace setters in fundraising around 10 a.m.

Free parking will be available in the inlet until noon. Passes can be printed from www.makingstrideswalk.org/oceancitymd.

At least 700 participants come out each year. Organizers are expecting 800 participants and 70 teams on Saturday, Barrett said.

The Ocean City Making Strides 5K run and walk is one of several events that make up the Pink Ribbon Classic at the Beach Series, an assortment of local activities to increase breast cancer awareness while raising money for the American Cancer Society.

This year’s Classic includes a ladies-only fishing tournament; Real Men Wear Pink competition; card game and mahj party/luncheon; mah jongg and golf tournaments; Brews for Boobs; the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 5K walk and run; and “Pamper Yourself for Charity Raffle.”

Most of the events are held in October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

The Pink Ribbon Classic Series was started in 1996 by a group of local volunteers and many are still on the committee. Since its inception, the series has raised about $3 million for breast cancer research, awareness, programs and services.

Last year, all the Pink Ribbon Classic events and the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer run/walk raised more than $325,000 for the American Cancer Society’s fight against breast cancer. The goal is to raise $340,000 this year.

Some of the local programs and services available in this area include free wigs for patients; Road to Recovery, which connects local drivers with patients to transport them to and from treatment; and the Look Good Feel Better program available at Atlantic General Hospital in Berlin and Peninsula Regional Medical Center in Salisbury, which teaches patients how to cope with the cosmetic side effects of chemotherapy and radiation treatment.

There is also the Hope Lodge, which provides lodging during treatment; Cancer Survivors Network available at www.cancer.org, a 24-hour-a-day cancer information center; and 1-800-227-2345 for patients to access ACS services.

In 2017 so far, the American Cancer Society provided cancer patients in Maryland with 2,291 rides to treatment, 3,812 nights of free lodging, and 2,513 people were serviced by trained cancer information specialists, Barrett said.

This year, 5,250 women in Maryland will be diagnosed with breast cancer. Across the country, that number rises to 252,710, and an estimated 40,610 will die from the disease, according to the ACS.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in women in the United States, other than skin cancer. It is the second-leading cause of cancer death in women, after lung cancer.

Breast cancer death rates have been decreasing, most likely due to early detection and better treatment. Currently, there are more than 3.1 million breast cancer survivors in the United States.

Visit makingstrideswalk.org/oceancitymd for more information. Find the chapter on Facebook at www.facebook.com/makingstridesoc or at the Twitter handle @OCMDStrides.

To learn more about the American Cancer Society, visit www.cancer.org or call 1-800-227-2345.

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