By Jason KUROSU
Downtown Glendale was overrun on a recent Sunday morning as the third annual Jingle Bell Run/Walk 5K benefitting arthritis research took over Brand Boulevard. Over 60 sponsored teams participated in the event, with the goal of raising $150,000. As of the day of the race, approximately $125,000 had been raised.
The Downtown Glendale Association and Massage Envy Spa presented the run, which began in front of the Alex Theatre, looped around Brand Boulevard and down Broadway, before finishing on Brand. As per the theme, the nearly 950 participating runners donned Santa hats, reindeer antlers, elf hats and all other manner of holiday garb for the race. The best costumes were honored after the race in the costume competition, one of several awards handed out at the conclusion of the event.
The donations made to the Arthritis Foundation will go towards research, educational materials for those suffering with arthritis, including educational opportunities for children with arthritis, such as summer camps.
Medals were distributed to the top three placed runners in a number of different age groups, with runners from ages 9 to 75 and over taking part in the 5K. In addition, the top three fundraising teams also received awards, as well as trophies for this year’s youth and young adult honorees, Theo Sturm and Jennifer Bachman.
A significantly shorter “Tot Trot” took place for kids ages 8 and under, who were also privy to a host of kid’s activities such as a bounce castle, face painting and pictures with their favorite Christmas characters.
Over $7 million has been raised in Jingle Bell Run events nationwide.