The 7th Annual ‘Walk to Fight Cancer’ will be held Saturday, October 14 at Plymouth State University’s Physical Education Center. The 12-hour event features volunteers walking a quarter-mile long course to raise money for individuals and families affected by cancer. The grassroots fundraiser is organized by the non-profit group Keeping You, Me and Memories Alive, Inc., which last year raised $18,000 in its most successful walk ever. Organizers point to the event’s local ties and goal of helping those in need, rather than passing the donated money to larger, out-of-town cancer research groups.
“We keep the money in the local community, we work with Speare Memorial Hospital’s oncology department in reaching families in need,” said Diane Tillotson, board treasurer.
Tillotson added, “We distribute a lot of the money around Christmas, buying gifts for children who have lost a parent to cancer, or buying fuel oil for families hard-hit by medical bills.”
More than $78,000 has been raised since the ‘Walk to Fight Cancer’ started six years ago. Money has been distributed to individuals and families in Ashland, Alexandria, Bridgewater, Campton, Dorchester, Ellsworth, Groton, Hebron, Holderness, Lincoln, New Hampton, Plymouth, Rumney, Thornton, Warren, Waterville Valley, Wentworth and Woodstock.
Prior to the walk, participants collect donations from their sponsors and turn them in at the registration, which starts at 11 a.m. that day. Previous entrants include PSU athletic teams and student organizations, local youth groups and individuals from the University and surrounding towns.
“We try to make it a community event, because that’s who we’re trying to help,” said Kathryn Melanson, board secretary.
Non-walkers can also support the event by purchasing luminaries for $5 each, in memory of a loved one lost to cancer or to honor a cancer survivor. T-shirts are given to walkers who raise at least $50 and to volunteers at the event, which runs from noon- midnight. Luminaries will be sold in the morning of September 30th in downtown Plymouth and in the afternoon at Currier Field. They will also be available October 7th in downtown Plymouth, and a dollar sale will be held in the HUB Pawsway the first two weeks of October.
The ‘Walk to Fight Cancer’ is sponsored by many local businesses. Dinner will be provided for the walkers by a local restaurant and snacks will be available during the day. Musicians, singers and Juggling Jim will provide entertainment during the event.
For more information and to download a registration form, go to www.memoriesalive.org, or email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 603-707-1466.