STAMFORD, Conn., -- Organizers have an ambitious goal to raise $35,000 in a fundraising run, but that ambition is matched by their goal to fight Lyme disease.
The Lyme Research Alliance’s 3rd Annual Race Against Lyme 5K Walk/Run will be held Sunday, April 27, at Cove Island Park in Stamford. The event begins at 10 a.m.
Peter Wild, the organization’s executive director, said last year’s race raised $27,000. They believe they can hit the $35,000 mark this year.
“As more people get to know about the race we are hoping that the word continues to get out,” he said. “So far we have more entries every year, and we hope that continues.”
The organizers are exploring the idea of hosting the race in another community next year, but Wild said no final decision has been made.
Cove Island Park is a great site for the race and for the people who attend, Wild said.
“It is a great location for us. It is right down by the beach and there is enough room to spread out so people can socialize before and after the race,” he said.
Money raised in previous races has been given as grants to researchers who are trying to find new and innovative ways to reliably diagnose the disease and to mitigate it.
“The big need is a reliable diagnostic test,” he said. “The blood test is very unsatisfactory at the moment. The goal is to find a reliable diagnostic test and in the longer term find a cure for the chronic disease.”
Lyme disease is an inflammatory disease caused by bacteria transmitted by ticks. Sufferers experience a rash, headache, fever and chills and eventually could experience arthritis and neurological disorders.
The disease was named after the towns of Lyme and Old Lyme, where cases were first identified in 1975.
The number of cases continues to rise, Wild said, with an estimated 1 million people, primarily in the Northeast, who have the disease.
At the race, children will have a chance to run on a loop course inside the park as runners race through the flat course that will include running on local roads before ending in the park.
There will also be a ceremonial one-loop course for Lyme patients.
A free shuttle bus will depart from Stamford train station to bring participants to and from the event.
For more information on the event visit: www.lymeresearchalliance.org/race.htm.