Organizers of Tyler’s upcoming 2019 Zero Prostate Cancer Run/Walk hope more than 1,000 people will participate and that this year’s fundraising in the fight to end prostate cancer will total $120,000.
The Sept. 7 run/walk at the Village at Cumberland Park is the only health event in East Texas that benefits men exclusively and is dedicated to raising awareness of prostate cancer, educating the community about the disease and raising money to fight it, according to organizers.
The event will be family-friendly. Late registration and packet pickup will be from 7:30 to 8:45 a.m. Sept. 7 and the event will start at 9 a.m. featuring a kids’ dash, a 5K run/walk and a 1-mile run/walk.
The charge to enter the 5K race is $30, but prostate cancer survivors and first responders may enter for $20. The charge for the 1-mile run/walk is $20. The fee for the kids’ dash is $15 for children 8 and under.
This is the fourth year for the run/walk. More information about the event is available at www.zeroprostatecancerrun.org/tyler.
Many people run in honor or in memory of a family member or a friend who has faced prostate cancer. Cynthia McAndrew, race co-director, said it is a great opportunity to show support and love to men in the community or somebody who is battling the disease.
Many people get together and run in teams for the camaraderie and for team building for their businesses.
Activities associated with the run/walk will start on Sept. 6 with a survivor breakfast from 8 to 10 a.m. at FD’s Grill House hosted by Urology Tyler, UT Health East Texas Cancer Institute and AbbVie Inc. The breakfast required an RSVP at www.zeroprostatecancerrun.org/tyler.
McAndrew said the survivor breakfast is a time when prostate cancer survivors celebrate life together and for men to show camaraderie with other men who are facing the disease.
Packet pickup will be from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 6 at the Hampton Inn & Suites Tyler-South, 8962 S. Broadway Ave. At the same times, Urology Tyler will provide free PSA screenings for men at the hotel. PSA screenings are a blood test to determine the level of a chemical, called prostate-specific antigen, that can signal whether a man may have prostate cancer.
“Men, be sure to stop by and get your free PSA screening when you pick up your race packet,” McAndrew said.
Sale of raffle tickets for six bicycles has already started. Individual tickets cost $5 each or five for $20, or $10 each or 12 for $100 depending on the bike. To purchase, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Sept. 7, which is race day, Smith County Medical Society Alliance will hand out bike helmets for children until the supply runs out as part of the Texas Medical Association’s Hard Hats for Little Heads initiative.
Water and food will be provided by restaurants in the Village at Cumberland and by other restaurants supporting the cause.
Besides the run/walk, activities on Sept. 7 will include an expo featuring exhibits by sponsors and vendors offering a variety of games and educational information about prostate cancer.
In its first year, the Zero Prostate Cancer Run/Walk at Tyler raised $88,000. The second year it raised $116,000 and last year it raised $108,000. Forty-five percent of the funds raised benefit Bethesda Health Clinic to assist local men.
The local run/walk is part of a national organization called Zero – The End of Prostate Cancer, now based in Alexandria, Virginia.
There will be more than 45 run/walk events across the U.S. with funds going to raise awareness of prostate cancer, for research, education, assistance and resources for men diagnosed with prostate cancer.