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Terry Fox Run aims to raise $1 for every Newmarket resident

'We have about 90,000 people, so our goal is always $90,000,' organizers say

“Cancer research can’t wait for COVID to be over.”

That is the motto Newmarket’s Terry Fox Run organizers have made their own amidst a year of COVID-19 complications. 

With only weeks to go until the Terry Fox Foundation’s annual Terry Fox Run on Sunday, Sept. 20, Newmarket’s dedicated volunteers are finding new ways to boost local donations.

This year’s run, held on the 40th anniversary of Terry Fox’s original 5,373-kilometre cross-Canada Marathon of Hope, will be a virtual one with participants encouraged to run, walk, and bike on a path of their choosing. 

To promote social distancing, Newmarket’s traditional planned running path through the Glenway neighbourhood has been suspended. 

Participants are encouraged to share videos of themselves on social media when the day rolls around to maintain the sense of community the walk normally brings.  

“You can walk with your family, walk by yourself, run with friends, bicycle. If you can’t do those things, you can sit on your driveway and dance,” said Muriel Lee, a member of Newmarket’s organizing team. “The goal is just to get out on that day, be active, and remember Terry Fox on the 40th anniversary of his Marathon of Hope.”

Those who wish to participate in this year’s Terry Fox Run are encouraged to register online as an individual, family, or team here

Donations and pledges to support participants can also be collected online at the same location. 

Currently, Newmarket’s donations for the 2020 Run number roughly $11,400, with a national total of just over $1.1 million. 

Since its inaugural year in 1994, Newmarket’s Terry Fox Run has raised over $1 million for cancer research. The organization’s national total stands at a staggering $750 million.

“Our goal every year is a dollar for every Newmarket resident,” said Lee. “We have about 90,000 people, so our goal is always $90,000. But we know we probably won’t hit that this year, even though the milestone runs like the 40th are the big ones.”

Despite COVID complications, Lee is nevertheless happy to report that donations are so far on par with the 2019 Newmarket Terry Fox Run, which raised just under $68,000.

“Newmarket has a great community, and we’re lucky to still have such great community support. It’s nice, especially because we won’t be seeing people face-to-face this year.”

To further boost donations in lieu of cancelled fundraising opportunities such as the group's Canada Day T-shirt booth at Fairy Lake and the annual Beer Store fundraiser, Terry Fox Run volunteers have introduced fun, new ways to get the area involved. 

Those who donate $40 or more to the Newmarket Terry Fox Run 40 for 40 fundraising page will automatically be entered into a draw to receive one of three prizes:

  • 40th-anniversary Adidas Terry Fox shoes donated by Newmarket resident Ron Eibel (first prize);
  • Cocktail boxes donated by Newmarket restaurant Arthur’s Landing (second prize);
  • 40th-anniversary commemorative Terry Fox T-shirt (third prize). 

The deadline to enter is Sept. 19, with the winners announced the following day on the Newmarket Terry Fox Run Facebook page. 

With Terry Fox signs planted firmly on front lawns, and banners erected across town, it’s safe to say Newmarket is ready for Sept. 20.

“This year’s theme is one day, your way,” said Lee. “However you do it, just go out and get involved.”