By Sarrah Peters
The Humane Society Pet Rescue and Adoption Center will hold its 9th Annual Reindeer Run on December 14. The 5K will begin in front of Blackstone Pub and Eatery located at 525 Broad Street in downtown Gadsden. Registration begins at 8 a.m., and the race will start at 8:30 a.m.
“You can walk or run it,” said HSPRAC Interim Director Jessica Millican.
Registration is $25 for those who register before the event. On the day of the event, registration is $30. To sign up fonline, visit runsignup.com/Race/AL/Gadsden/HumaneSocietyReindeerRun5K.
The event is a Grand Prix Race for the Gadsden Runners Club. Awards will be given to the top three runners in each age bracket. Awards will also be given to the top three male and female runners.
A packet pick-up will be held on December 13 at Blackstone from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Packets will include your number and race information, such as the map.
There is also a 1K Doggy Walk entry. The doggy walk entrance fee is $5.
Dog owners are welcome to bring their pets to walk or run the 5K and 1K races.
“Just make sure the dogs are on a leash,” said Millican. “Weather permitting, we are going to try to bring some of our dogs there from the shelter. They will be available for adoption.”
Owners that bring their pets are encouraged to dress themselves and their pets in holiday attire.
“We’ll have some reindeer antlers and things like that as well,” said Millican.
Members of Ainsley’s Angels of America will participate in the event. According to the group’s mission, “In addition to ensuring everyone can experience endurance events, Ainsley’s Angels of America aims to build awareness about America’s special needs community through inclusion in all aspects of life, by promoting awareness, providing education and participating as active members in local communities.”
“We’re very excited to have them join us this year,” said Millican.
All of the money raised supports the animals at the Humane Society.
“We are trying to make as much money as possible with the runners and sponsorships because the money comes back to the shelter to help us with the animals,” said Millican.
Sponsors for the event include Blackstone Pub and Eatery, Chris and Christi Robinson, Gadsden Runners Club, Choice Fabricators, Modern Woodmen’s Morgan Lavender, Home Equity, C & P Talladega, Gadsden Orthodontics, Etowah Chemical, Lamar Smith, Morgan Cunningham, Race Krewe and Mr. Tees.
The Humane Society is still accepting sponsorships for the Reindeer Run until Friday, December 6, in order for the t-shirts to be printed in time for the race. There are three levels of sponsorships: Gold Paw for $500; Silver Paw for $250; and Bronze Paw for $100. Even if you cannot do a sponsorship, Millican said that any donations are welcome.
“It’s a family friendly event, so even if you don’t want to a race, come out and support us and come out and see the holiday attire and the animals,” said Millican. “Come out and bring your Christmas spirit and enjoy downtown Gadsden.”
Millican also encourages people to come out and volunteer this holiday season.
“Now that school is getting out for the holiday season, if you and your family want to come volunteer or bring the animals fleece blankets or a Christmas treat, you are more than welcome to,” said Millican. “It’d be a great time to volunteer with the family.”
Now that winter has arrived, Millican also reminded pet owners to be mindful of their pets outdoors.
“Always remember in the colder temperatures, if it is too cold for you outside, it’s probably too cold for your animals,” said Millican. “Make sure they have a warm place to stay or bring them inside.”
For more information about the Reindeer Run, sponsorships or volunteering, call the Humane Society at 256-442-1347.