More than 15,000 people are expected to lace up their running shoes Sunday and raise money to battle breast cancer.
The Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure has a goal of raising $1.5 million locally, said Carol Cullivan, event director.
“It is the largest participatory event in southern Arizona,” she said.
Events, which consist of noncompetitive one mile and 5 kilometer walk/runs and a competitive 5 kilometer race, will kick off at 7 a.m. at Reid Park, Cullivan said.
People can sign up for the event through Sunday morning, she said.
The event is a major fundraiser for breast cancer work in Pima, Yuma, Cochise, Graham, Greenlee and Santa Cruz counties, Cullivan said.
“All the funds we generate from this race go to provide services for people,” she said. “We provide local grants for breast health screening, treatment and education.”
Breast cancer is a widespread problem.
“In southern Arizona 1 in 6 women are afflicted with breast cancer, and nationally it is 1 in 8,” she said.
“Everyone seems to know someone or is related to someone with breast cancer.”
The highlight of the event will be a survivors ceremony at 9:30 a.m., she said. More than 1,000 breast cancer survivors are expected to parade onto the stage at the Demeester Bandshell in what is expected to be an emotional event, she said.
In addition to fighting breast cancer, the event will support another local cause, Cullivan said. “We are working in conjunction with the Community Food Bank, asking people to bring a box of cereal to El Con (during registration Thursday through Saturday) or to the race,” she said.
“We are working with the community to help those in need.”
More than 700 volunteers are involved in putting on the event, which will require hundreds of portable toilets, Cullivan said.
The event is put on by the Susan G. Komen Southern Arizona Affiliate, where Cullivan is development director.
IF YOU GO
What: 11th annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure
When: events begin at 7 a.m. Sunday
Where: Reid Park, near South Country Club Road and East Camino Campestre
Events: 1 mile and 5 kilometer noncompetitive walk/runs and a 5K competitive run
Fees: $23 to $40, depending on event
Parking: participants are asked to park at El Con Mall. Shuttle bus service will be provided from the north parking lot at El Con, north of The Home Depot, to the race site from 6-7:30 a.m. Return shuttle service will run from 9:15-10:45 a.m.
For more information, go to www.komensaz.org
Entries for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure will be accepted through Sunday morning.
Entries will be accepted at El Con Mall, 3600 E. Broadway. The event storefront, across from Ross Dress for Less, will be open from noon to 6 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.
Race-day entries will be accepted from 6 to 7:45 a.m. Sunday at Ramada 22 at the northwest corner of Reid Park.
Adult entry fees for the mile and 5 kilometer noncompetitive events are $35, with cancer survivors paying $25. Children’s fees are $23, and competitive runners pay $40 for their event.