When it comes to supporting a worthy cause, a local fitness advocate decided that a sprint through her home town was better than a drive through the county.
Marilyn Farnworth of Kingsville has participated in each of the first 36 annual Terry Fox Runs and for its 37th edition, decided that a more local atmosphere was in order. The first annual Kingsville Terry Fox Run took place Sunday, Sept. 17 and backed by sponsors and supporters throughout the area in addition to a team of 56 volunteers, was able to raise $7,495 for cancer research through the Terry Fox Foundation.
The event was attended by 171 runners, walkers and cyclists who chose either a two or five kilometre route starting and ending alongside the Lakeside Park pavilion. Once participants completed their journeys, they re-converged at the park for barbecued hot dogs, servings of vegetables, beverages and a door prize draw of about 80 items donated by local businesses and groups. Lakeside Park was also the site of DJ services by Cam Sarkis, balloons and temp tattoos by Jangles the Clown, massages by Britt Schooley and reflexology by Sara Friesen and Marg Wall as part of the Canada-wide fundraiser.
In previous years, Farnworth participated in and played an organizational role in the Terry Fox Run hosted by Tecumseh — the nearest location to her Kingsville home.
“I came up with the idea to have the Run here because of the long drive,” she explained. “People in this part of the county deserve to have a Terry Fox Run closer to home so I decided that there should be one here.”
Most of the new local run’s participants as well as sponsors and donors hailed from the Harrow-Kingsville-Leamington corridor. Farnworth thanked her volunteers as well as the Town of Kingsville, the community’s Dominos Pizza, TD Bank, Zehr’s and Del Fresco Produce, Freshco, the Kingsville Royal Canadian Legion, Caesar’s Windsor and the Shell gas station on Division Road for support and providing food, beverages and other supplies.
“Kingville is definitely a town with a big heart,” said Farnworth, who also credited Kingsville parks and recreation manager Maggie Durocher as having played a major role in the preparation of the Run. “This is a very caring community. Our group of volunteers all did a great job and the response has been amazing.”
The run’s start was preceded by opening remarks from Kingsville mayor Nelson Santos — one of many residents grateful for Farnworth’s efforts to bring the Terry Fox Run closer to home.
“I can’t say enough about Marilyn,” he noted. “To get all these people together and to make this happen is outstanding.”
To date, Canadian Terry Fox Runs have raised roughly $700 million for cancer research and support. Next year’s events — including the one in Kingsville — will take place Sunday, Sept. 16. Lakeside Park will once again serve as the local event’s headquarters. Farnworth is encouraging 2018 participants to register online at www.terryfoxrun.org/run instead of at the tent on the day of the event. Presently, about 80 per cent of Ontario’s Terry Fox runners, walkers and cyclists pre-register online, a method that reduces on site wait times and lineups.