Hundreds of people turned out Sunday to run and walk in the fifth annual Great Pumpkin Run/Walk.

SLIDESHOW: Pumpkin Run doubles in size, profits

A Halloween-themed fitness fundraiser has raised $56,000 for Peace Arch Hospital.



The Great Pumpkin Run/Walk has grown.

Held Sunday, the Peace Arch Hospital and Community Health Foundation event nearly doubled participation and funds raised in 2010, officials say.

“We’re thrilled,” said Febe Galvez-Voth, head of the foundation’s marketing and communications. “Over 700 people attended, $56,000 raised. We’ve got a fabulous community behind us.”

The windfall follows disappointing news last week regarding the foundation’s historically popular WinFall Lottery – which, for the first year, did not break even (see page 5).

The run, in its fifth year, offered both one- and five-kilometre routes to those interested in walking or running in support of the hospital. Participants were challenged to collect pledges or donate to the cause online – a task many took to heart, surpassing last year’s fundraising by $26,000. In 2009, the run raised $10,000.

The top individual fundraiser was Norm Rutherford, who raised more than $5,000. Galvez-Voth’s Commit to be Fit won in the team category, collecting nearly $10,000, followed by Phillip Rantucci’s Team Reid’s Pharmasave, which raised $3,700.

Galvez-Voth said the event also recorded its first securities gift, when longtime supporter Theo Miller – the surviving spouse of JJM Contracting founder Michael Miller – signed over $5,000 in stock to the foundation. The gift was the single largest donation to the pumpkin run.

Many who participated took the Halloween theme to heart, pacing their chosen route in everything from ’80s-style afros to Hawaiian garb. Even four-legged participants got in on the fun – although likely not their own idea. One arrived in a dress, another in a bee costume; even Yoda made an appearance.

Proceeds from the run will help purchase medical equipment for the hospital.

 

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