The Hockomock Area YMCA will be hosting the eighth annual Run for Bob 5K Walk, Run, Roll Saturday, June 23. It is part of famly day that supports your local YMCA.
The day will take place on a level course at the campus of Marsh & McLellan Companies, 431 Washington Street, Franklin.
Day of race registration starts at 9 a.m., with the walk/run/roll beginning at 10 a.m. All proceeds will benefit the Hockomock Area YMCA Reach Out for Youth and Families financial assistance program and the YMCA’s Integration Initiative. Through integration programs, Y families gain independence and self-esteem and the community is strengthened.
Included will be games and relays for all ages to participate in. Youngsters will be treated to a giant inflatable jumpy, plus “touch-a-truck,” and face painting. There will be dozens of colorful helium balloons at the registration table filled with a ticket for a prize. All prizes are worth more than the $20 donation. There will also be a silent auction.
Following the race, the top three finishers, both men and women, will receive award medals. Traditional categories include: 12 & under, 13-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, and 60-69. This year, due to Run for Bob’s rising popularity across the spectrum of the community, they have added a 70+ awards category.
The Hockomock Area YMCA thanks Kris Biagiotti, who started the event in 2005 after losing her husband unexpectedly. Thank you also to the sponsors: Iron Mountain, Liberty Mutual, Bay State Physical Therapy, Gym Source, Life Fitness, Designs by Deb, and Marsh & McLellan Companies. Bob Biagiotti was a YMCA member committed to charity, sportsmanship, and kindness to all.
He loved competing in 5K races, pushing his daughter Kayla in her special racing stroller, running alongside Kris and his brother, Rick. Run for Bob, which began as a way to honor the spirit of Bob, has evolved into an event celebrating children of all abilities. Since 2005, the event has raised $65,000, allowing children with special needs to participate alongside their typically developing peers in an array of social and recreational programs and activities.
As an example, Kayla Biagiotti has been a volunteer at the YMCA for years. This has been an opportunity for Kayla outside of her school, a chance to interact with children and adults from her community. To see her smile when you walk into the branch is a true testament to what this work is all about.
The Hockomock Area YMCA's Integration Initiative was established in 2004 after parents of children with disabilities approached YMCA staff about getting their kids more involved in programs. YMCA president Ed Hurley said, "we didn't realize this was a challenge, and they came and said to us that this was something that needed to be addressed."
Since its inception, the Integration Initiative has provided more than 450 local families with opportunities for children with special needs to participate in YMCA programs alongside their typically developing peers.
The YMCA has been privileged to witness benefits to the community through integration, from individual improvements in social skills and self-esteem, to increased physical activity and independence, as well as the mutual respect developed amongst people of all abilities.
Visit www.hockymca.org to register to be part of Run for Bob. Price for adults is $20 through Friday June 15. Starting June 16, fees will be $25 for each adult registrant. Children under 12 and Best Buddies may register for $10 each. T-shirts will be given to the first 300 registered participants.
Contact the YMCA with any questions at 508-643-5225 or email@example.com. Volunteers are needed, Contact Jeanne Sherlock at 508-643-5216 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The Hockomoock YMCA is a not-for-profit charitable community service organization with facilities in North Attleboro, Foxboro, Franklin, and the Mansfield Arts & Education Center, serving more than 32,000 members from 15 local communities.