The 5th anniversary Racing for Donation 8k Run/Walk was held at the Mississippi Organ Recovery Agnecy’s headquarters on Lakeland Drive in Flowood on Saturday, April 30th, 2016, and was the most successful race in the event’s history. More than 450 racers pre-registered for the event and more than 50 signed up the morning of the race, totaling 500 racers, the most that have ever participated. Another record-breaker, the event raised more than $14,000 in flat donations to benefit the Mississippi Organ Recovery Agency’s Public Education Fund, to aid in continuing outreach about the need for registered organ, eye and tissue donors. Outreach provides the community with donation education opportunities so they can make informed decisions, start the donation conversation with their loved ones, and sign the donor registry, ultimately resulting in more lives being saved and healed. A special thanks goes out to #teamwalker. The family and friends of hero and organ donor Walker Wilbanks, in partnership with Jackson Prep, raised more than $10,000 of the $14,000 total raised.
Race medals bearing the special edition, 5th anniversary logo were given to top three male and female finishers in each age division for the category of “Run” and “Walk.” The racers completed a flat, well marked course down Liberty Road and through the Laurel Park subdivision. There were several water stops, and fresh bananas, gatorade, and ice water at the finish line. The race was timed by SISU Race Timing. The overall winner was Andy Schmegel and the overall female finisher was Karen Warren. See Race Day Results HERE.
At the finish line, the Celebration of Life Picnic kicked off and was free and open to the racers, their family and friends, and the public. Food and refreshments were provided by local vendors including Corner Bakery, Hungry Howie’s pizza, and Brown Bottling Group. In addition to baked goods, coffee, pizza, drinks and snacks, there were also free bags of fresh popcorn, snow cones, and hotdogs and hamburgers fresh off the grill. Music played by MORA’s favorite band, Chris Gil and the Sole Shakers, and their were free health screenings offered inside at the health fair.
Free activities for the whole family abounded with activity options including a gaming truck, train rides through the parking lot, an obstacle course, a Kid’s One Mile Fun Run, and a reptile show by Percy “the Snake Man” King.
To close the day, donor families, volunteers, MORA staff, transplant recipients, and participants released blue and green balloons in to the air to honor donors who saved and healed the lives of others through the gift of life.
Typically, the Racing for Donation 8k Run/Walk is held the last weekend in April. Make plans to join us next year! Watch the Donate Life Mississippi Facebook page for the event listing and stay subscribed to receive our email newsletters.
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