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September 10, 2011 - The HOPE Center's First Big Run!

What: Follow the Roadrunner to a Healthier Life 1K/5K Walk/Run-a-Thon

Where: Central Park

When: Saturday, September 10, 2011

Time: Registration check-in: 7:30 a.m.; event start: 8:30 a.m.

Ticket Prices: $25 - Adult, $15 - 17 & Under/60 & Over

Beneficiary: The funds raised support efforts of the HOPE Center with • Scholarships for Children • School Supplies • Parent Education • Meals for the students • Staff development

Executive Director: Gerie Grimes

Committee Members: Cassandra Johnson/Business Manager, Vanessa Nguyen/Accounting/Computer Information Specialist, Bruce Duran/Development Director

President(s): Charles T. Smith

Introductions: Dr. Maria Guarjardo, Mayor’s Office

Welcome: Gerie Grimes

Attendance: 200 plus

Attire: Athletic wear

Special Thanks: To all the volunteers and staff and participants

Board of Directors: Chairperson – Charles T. Smith; Vice Chairperson – Sid Davidson; Treasurer – Jon Hanson; Secretary – Dr. Barbara Batey; Dr. John Fischer; Charles Leali

Blacktie Photos by: Steven Shoppman

 From left, Janell Lindsey, Tanya Russell, Gerie Grimes, Tamara White
From left, Janell Lindsey, Tanya Russell, Gerie Grimes, Tamara White

The summer is coming to an end, which means that the summer heat is dying down.  On Saturday morning, the temperature was not the unforgiving near hundred degree temperatures we had through August.  Instead it was a cool morning to host the 1st annual 1K/5K Walk/Run-A-Thon.  However this was more than just an athletic event; it was a chance for families to get together and have fun while doing something healthy for a good cause.

The HOPE Center has been operating for 49 years, providing service to special-needs and at risk children and adults.  Their mission states, “Hope Center is a community-based agency dedicated to meeting the needs of gifted children, individuals with developmental disabilities and developmental delays, at-risk and persons in need of specialized vocational or educational services. These services are provided in order to develop, maintain, and enhance the functioning of each enrollee. The philosophy of service is to admit individuals to programs within our agency which meet their needs and requirements as specifically as possible.”  Fortunately the 200+ participants in the first run in their history helped them to raise money to continue these great efforts.

As an organization that provides services to children, it is important to keep things fun, and Gerie Grimes, the organization's executive director, did just that with the event she organized on Saturday.  With a DJ pumping music at the finish line and vendors like the Denver Zoo teaching the kids about animals, there was fun for both adults and their children.  Gerie’s excitement and enthusiasm was a welcome treat for the event, and will certainly help to keep the momentum of this event for the success of another next year. 


Gerie commented, “We had over 200 turn out this year, not too bad for our first try.”  Likely next year this fun event will be twice the size and twice the fun.  As the tag line for the event states, “Follow the ROADRUNNER to a Healthier Life!!” The happy participants did just that!


For more information about the HOPE Center, log on to


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