(Publisher’s note: This is another in a series of features about organizations that hope to receive funding from the 5 Healthy Town’s Board of Directors, which will meet on May 23 to consider a budget of $75,000 for the Chelsea Wellness Coalition’s Year 5 Plan.)
By Lisa Carolin
Among the Chelsea Wellness Coalition’s interventions is the Heart and Sole Race, which takes place on May 21 at Chelsea High School and is in its 27th year.
“This year’s race proceeds will be donated to Behavioral Health Services at St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea,” said Karla Bernath, the community point person responsible for recruiting and enrolling participants in the Healthy Communities Walking Program. “They have announced that the proceeds will go towards purchasing exercise equipment for their patients to use as one mode of therapy in their renovated behavioral health wing of the hospital.”
Bernath also hopes that the race will help bring attention to mental health services.
“We are also excited to offer participants the opportunity to show their support for mental health,” said Bernath. “Participants are able to choose if they would like their race shirt to signify they are racing in support of mental health awareness.”
Typically the race has 600 participants who range in age from 3 to 87.
“The 5K and 10K are USATF (USA Track & Field) certified and are perfect for those working on their personal records, but at the same time we also have many people who participate for the cause or to enjoy a family friendly event in Chelsea,” said Bernath.
She has received positive feedback about the new race routes for the 5K and 2-mile race. Both routes are completely paved.
There is also a bike race that starts at 8:15 a.m. and the run/walk starts at 9:30 a.m. All starting lines will be located in the High School parking lot off Trinkle Road.
There will be a pancake breakfast and an Expo in Chelsea High School Commons from 8-11:30 a.m., and Friends of the Chelsea Area Scouts will make and serve the breakfast with all donations going to their group.
The Heart and Sole Race encourages community involvement, physical activity, and brings people to local businesses. The Five Healthy Towns grant would pay for materials and marketing to help keep registration fees for children low and allow participants to download professional race day photos online for free.
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