Carrot Park was filled to the brim with families and friends all getting ready to go for a bit of a run on Sunday morning as the sun slowly crept out from behind a wall of grey clouds.
While the weather ended up cooperating, DJ Jamie Keamo was busy pumping out some great tunes, donations were being made to the Terry Fox Foundation, and friends and family members were chatting and having fun as the 10:00 a.m. race time kept getting closer and closer.
While it was a great day to remember a Canadian hero, it was actually the first time since 2016 that the Terry Fox Run was held in Port Hardy.
After missing a few years due to not having an organizer in place, Port Hardy Councillor Janet Dorward decided to step up to the plate and take on the initiative.
Dorward noted she wanted to bring the fundraiser back because “Terry Fox is a super inspirational person, and we want to keep his dream alive here in Port Hardy.”
As for what the Terry Fox Run brings to the North Island, Dorward added it “gets people together, gets them outdoors, active, and it’s all in the spirit of Terry Fox on Terry Fox day.”
The options for runners this year was to take on a 5k or a 1k route, both of which left from Carrot Park and looped around town before coming back to the park.
Evolve Fitness Owner Tara McCart led the group of 107 participants in a quick warm up before the singing of O Canada, and then the countdown for the run began.
While there were some strong competitors registered to run, it turned out to be young Shay DeZwager who crossed the finish line first after completing 1k around Port Hardy.
All told, Port Hardy’s Terry Fox Run raised $2,200.30 with more still coming in.
“Thank you for your enthusiastic support of the 2019 Terry Fox Run!” said Dorward in a social media post after the event.
Quatsino also held a Terry Fox Run on Sunday, where seven participants brought in $293.95 in donations.
Above all else, it was a great time spent remembering Terry Fox and the legacy he left behind.
The Terry Fox Run is an annual non-competitive charity event held in numerous regions around the world in commemoration of Canadian cancer activist Terry Fox, and his Marathon of Hope, and to raise money for cancer research.
The event was founded in 1981 by Isadore Sharp, who had contacted Terry in hospital by telegram and expressed his wishes to hold an annual run in Terry’s name to raise funds for cancer research.