Race for the Cure: What you need to know

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

A sea of pink will spill into the streets of Columbus this weekend.

For Saturday's 18th-annual Komen Columbus Race for the Cure, tens of thousands of pink-clad supporters will descend on Downtown to run, walk, volunteer or participate in whatever way they can to fight breast cancer.

An expected 50,000-plus participants this year are predicted to bring in more money than ever before for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation. The proceeds will add to an impressive pot of $15 million raised locally since the first Columbus race, held in 1993.

The Komen Columbus affiliate consistently ranks in the top 10 for Race for the Cure participation. That first year, 875 participants raised $50,000, and each subsequent Race for the Cure has been more successful than the last. In 2009, more than 46,000 runners and walkers brought in more than $2.1 million for the cause.

Most of the money raised through Race for the Cure stays near home - 75 percent goes directly to support local education, screening and treatment programs, while the remaining quarter is used for national research.

Three different race options allow all levels of runners and walkers to participate. The 5K run and 5K walk each cover 3.1 miles of ground, and a one-mile Family Fun Walk is a good alternative for non-runners.

This year's start line is on Front Street, directly in front of the city building, and the race will finish in front of the Statehouse.

After the race, a celebration is planned on the Statehouse lawn. A Survivor Ceremony will honor those who've triumphed over breast cancer, and special guest Chris Spielman, whose wife Stefanie succumbed to the disease last year, will address the crowd.

As musical guests Capitol Showcase Chorus, Roberta Albert and the Hot Pink Racers perform, the best race times from men, women and survivors will be announced.

Sign Up:

If you haven't registered for the race, there are still a few chances to sign up. Macy's at Easton is accepting sign-ups between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m. Thursday, May 13, and between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Friday, May 14. On the day of the race, runners can sign up at the Vern Riffe Center between 6:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m.