Running for a cause

It may be an early start to a Saturday, but it’s for a good cause and typically a fun event.

The Minot Area Homeless Coalition will be holding its third annual Charity 5K Walk/Run on Aug. 3 at Oak Park. Registration will start at 7:30 a.m. and walkers will start at 8:15 a.m., with the runners starting at 8:30 a.m. Cost for participating in the event is $20 with no T-shirt or $25 with the T-shirt.

The Minot Area Homeless Coalition Charity 5K Walk/Run is an all-comers race. Participants are not put into divisions. Louis McLeod, executive director for the Minot Area Homeless Coalition, said it’s a non-competitive walk/run, which is probably why there was a big crowd that came for it last year. “Last year we had over 90 runners and walkers,” he said. “We never know how many people will show up, we just prepare accordingly. Some came from Williston, Dunseith, Kenmare and we had over 20 people from the Minot Air Force Base.”

During the walk/run, there will be people standing in various spots directing participants where to go, McLeod said. There will also be water and Gatorade available for participants, he added. There are no prizes either promised or implied to those who participate, McLeod said.

All of the money raised from the charity event will go toward the Minot Area Homeless Coalition. This event is also technically the fourth annual, McLeod said, but there wasn’t one during the flood in 2011.

When the idea for a charity walk/run was coming about, McLeod said they had a lot of people saying the Minot Area Homeless Coalition is good at what they do. There was also a group of runners who said there weren’t enough road running events and they wanted an event that would benefit everyone as well as runners, he added.

“People just come out and run or walk,” McLeod said about the event. “It’s a fun time for all and everyone has a good time. We welcome everybody.”

Not much is new or different at this year’s charity walk/run. McLeod said just the T-shirts are different with a different design and color. This year the T-shirts are green with black lettering.

“If people like to walk or run, here’s an opportunity,” McLeod said to encourage people to participate. “We’re giving them an opportunity and also to support an agency making a difference in the community.”

For more information, people can call the Minot Area Homeless Coalition at 852-6300.