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Runners out for a good cause

Loon Lake race proceeds to go toward Special Olympics
Runners out for a good cause

by Kyle Wells Walkers, bikers, runners and joggers will take part in the 16th annual Loon Lake Race on Sunday, September 25 to help raise money for BC Special Olympics-Powell River athletes.

The race, 13.2 kilometres around Inland Lake, formerly called Loon Lake, starts and finishes at the main campground. A seven-kilometre shorter run is also an option, to Anthony Island and back. The trail is mostly flat and fully wheelchair accessible.

Participants start either walking or biking the full route at 10 am and running the full or shorter route at 11 am. Registration for the run starts at 9 am and continues to 10:45 am. Preregistration can be completed online at or by mail.

Proceeds from the event, hosted by Avid Fitness Centre, go toward supporting local special olympics athletes with travel and equipment expenses. This year, the men’s curling team qualified for national games in Edmonton, February, 2012. The team took part in a training camp in Vancouver in August and are preparing hard for the games.

“They’re under a pretty stringent program in terms of their eating habits, their training,” said Jackie Milsom, special olympics local coordinator. “Once the curling rink is up and running they’ll be practicing once, hopefully twice a week.”

Coach Cameron Reid said the team has been together for nearly three years but this is the first time they have made it this far. The players are excited to go to the nationals and will be accompanied by Reid and team manager Susan Storry.

“Whether we win or not, that’s beside the point,” said Reid.

Powell River Special Olympics golf team also benefits from fundraising in the community and from the Loon Lake Race.

“We’re hoping to get lots of people out,” said Milsom. “Usually it’s a good turnout and it’s a fabulous race.”

There will be a post-run fundraiser barbeque at Inland Lake, as well as an awards ceremony where pairs of Mizuno shoes will be given to the winners of the men’s and women’s 13-kilometre runs. Registration fees can be paid online or on the day of the race, although prices will go up on the day. Registration fees are waved for participants who have collected more than $75 in pledges.