The 4th Annual Race to the Shade 5K Race & Walk will be held May 19 at Maumee Bay State Park, 1750 Park Rd., Oregon.
The annual event, started in 2009 by Cindy Pickett, formerly of Elmore, and Eleanor Riffle, of Millbury, has drawn more and more participants each year, raising funds and bringing to light the dangers of melanoma and other skin cancers.
It’s a cause close to the women’s hearts. Micah Pickett – Cindy’s son and Eleanor’s son-in-law, was 23 years old when a small lesion on his neck was diagnosed with metastatic malignant melanoma in 2005. The Lake High School graduate faced six surgeries, including total radical neck dissection.
Micah Pickett, shown with son Haiden, was
diagnosed with metastatic malignant mela-
noma in 2005. His battle with skin cancer
prompted his mom and mother-in-law to
rganize the annual Safe in the Shade 5K
Race & Walk.
Thankful that Micah was doing well and determined to spare other families from the nightmare their family went through, the women organized that first walk-a-thon to get the word out about melanoma. The pair subsequently formed the 501c3 Safe in the Shade Melanoma Foundation.
In the past, they’ve donated funds raised to cancer research and to the Victory Center in Toledo. This year’s proceeds will go toward an initiative to buy shade protection for area school playgrounds.
Race/walk registration opens at 8 a.m. at Shelter #2. Runners and walkers will step off at 9 a.m. The registration fee is $20. Online registration is available at www.safeintheshadeohio.com. Entry fees payable to Safe in the Shade may be mailed to Annie Kim, 5065 Chardonnay Lane, Oregon, 43616.
Awards will be presented to runners in various categories, including overall male and female and in age categories from 9 and under to 80 and older. The walk is non-competitive.
Fruit, sport drinks and other goodies will be provided at the finish. Dogs on leashes are welcome in the park and at the race. Free sunscreen will be provided before and after the event.
For registration information, email
. For more information about the event, call Riffle at 419-356-6429.