St. Isidore Catholic Church, the headquarters for the Neighborhood Food Pantries organization (formerly called Feeding Northwest DuPage), is the primary sponsor of the annual 5K Race2Grace to support the pantries' mission on Saturday, Aug. 17.
The ninth annual race is a USATF certified event and will begin at 7:30 a.m. on the grounds of Stratford Square Mall in Bloomingdale.
Runners, walkers and joggers of all levels are invited to participate in Race2Grace. Medals will be awarded to the top three male and female finishers in six age groups, as well as top three overall finishers. All participants will receive T-shirts, and refreshments will be available after the race.
Immediately following the 5K, there will be a Driveway Dash kids race for youngsters ages 12 and younger.
Sally Meyer, a St. Isidore parishioner who serves as chairwoman for this year's race, said the proceeds from entry fees, donations and sponsorships will once again benefit Neighborhood Food Pantries, a charitable organization that has provided basic food items for those in northwest DuPage County who could not otherwise afford to buy them.
The organization also provides monetary assistance for housing (rent/mortgage/short-term shelter), utilities, prescription medications and other medical-related needs, and transportation.
"Last year alone, Neighborhood Food Pantries served 3,271 families in northwest DuPage County, which included 6,594 adults, 5,538 kids and 1,055 seniors," Meyer said.
"Fundraisers like the 5K Race2Grace and donations throughout the year are vital to our ongoing ability to accomplish our mission. We can't express our appreciation enough to everyone who helps by participating in events like the Race2Grace."
Race-day registration is available beginning at 6 a.m. at the St Isidore Parish Ministry Center, 427 W. Army Trail Road, Bloomingdale, adjacent to the mall.
St. Isidore parishioner Ferdinand Marasigan will once again serve as race director, as he has for the past eight races. Start and finish lines are on Knollwood Drive. The course heads north to Stratford Drive and follows a clockwise loop on the outermost lane.
Two laps are required before exiting again on Knollwood Drive to meet the USATF certified distance of 3.1 miles.
For the serious runner, the race will be certified under USATF Course Certificate IL-090802-JW, with traditional bib-based timing and results provided by RaceTime, Inc.