Running for a Reason in Manchester

The Alliance Against Cancer 5K Road Race celebrates 5 years of Raising Funds for NCCC.

Focus article photo

Participants can walk or run the 5K course through Manchester NH's historic district along the Merrimack River.

On Sunday, September 9, at 10:00 a.m., the 5th Annual Alliance against Cancer 5K race in Manchester, NH, will kick-off with a start-gun BANG!

Since 2010 the Alliance 5K race has been hosted by the Friends of the Norris Cotton Cancer Center, and is part of The Prouty Challenge event series, which raises funds to help support the Cancer Center's world-class research, state-of-the-art equipment, critical education programs, and innovative clinical trials that improve the lives of cancer patients. They also fund quality-of-life patient services such as massage, writing-for-healing workshops, support groups, and patient libraries.

Courage and inspiration from those who know

The Honorary Chair for this year's race is Cindy Fox Blixt, a teacher in the Manchester school system for 36 years; Cindy was diagnosed a year ago with an extremely rare form of leukemia.

"She has handled the chemotherapy, stem cell transplant, and many unwanted nights in the hospital with amazing determination and strength. Cindy is taking her diagnosis and treatment one day at a time. When asked during the long weeks of chemotherapy if she ever had one of those 'Why me' days, Cindy's response, said with a smile, was 'Why not me?'" said Cindy's sister, Casey Fox Pepin.

"Our honorary chairs over the years have been fathers, daughters, sisters and friends that have inspired us to do more. This year is no exception," said Christine Telge, southern coordinator for the Friends of Norris Cotton Cancer Center.

How this Manchester 5K started
Starting line

In 2008 the New Hampshire Athletic Alliance Running Club started the 5K run/walk to honor their coach and teammate, Dave LeBlanc, who was being treated for lymphoma at Manchester's Norris Cotton Cancer Center. LeBlanc and Iraq veteran Scott Miller, cancer survivor and brother to a club teammate, were the Honorary co-chaired the first race. "It was through running that our club met these courageous people," said Telge, also a member of the NH Athletic Alliance Running Club, "and with running we hope to raise money in their honor for the Cancer Center."

In the last four years the Alliance 5K races have raised a combined total of over $33,000. This year the goal is to top last year's $11,495 and reach $15,000. An ambitious goal, but with the devotion and commitment of participants such as members of Team Cindy and the Fox family it is likely to be achieved.

Learn about the Alliance 5K Run/Walk

The Alliance 5K run/walk starts and finishes at Milly's Tavern on Commercial Street, with the route paralleling the Merrimack River, then looping around the Northeast Dental Stadium, returning on the River Walking path to finish the last of the 3.1 miles through the historic Amoskeag Millyard. Runners can watch the 11:00am start of the Kids' 400m race in the park right next to Milly's Tavern, then after the award ceremony, join in the celebration with live music, BBQ, and beer.

The entry fee for the Alliance Against Cancer 5K is $30, $20 person for teams with more 4 or more teammates, and $10 for children 12 and younger.

September 04, 2012