Runners race to register for St. Jude Memphis Marathon® Weekend on Dec. 6 - WNEM TV 5

Runners race to register for St. Jude Memphis Marathon® Weekend on Dec. 6

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SOURCE St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Registration opens May 5, anticipating sell-out due to growing interest in running for a reason

MEMPHIS, Tenn., May 5, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Running a marathon is an empowering feat, and so is helping raise millions to support kids fighting cancer. Those eager to accomplish both can register for the 2014 St. Jude Memphis Marathon® Weekend, starting May 5.

Registration opens May 5 for the St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend. The popular event anticipates a sell-out due to the growing interest in running for a reason.

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital® is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other deadly diseases. Runners who fundraise for the hospital are called St. Jude Heroes because they run for a reason – to ensure families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food, so they can focus on helping their child live.

Among those highly anticipating the event are runners like St. Jude Hero Steve Blume of Brentwood, Tenn. For two years, he has trained and led groups of St. Jude Heroes, raising more than $70,000 for the hospital and Blume fondly recalls running through the St. Jude campus seeing St. Jude patients on the sidelines.

"When you run most races people are yelling, 'Come on, you can do it.' During the St. Jude Memphis Marathon they yell 'Thank you!'" Blume said, referring to friends and family of St. Jude patients who line the race route which winds through the hospital's campus to cheer on runners.

"It's an honor to host the tens of thousands of fundraisers, participants and volunteers who will be uniting for the St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend on Dec. 6 to support our lifesaving mission," said Richard Shadyac Jr., CEO of ALSAC/St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. "We look forward to providing an unforgettable experience for these dedicated individuals who are investing countless hours training, raising funds and making a significant difference for some of the world's sickest children."

Also looking to set new records is St. Jude Hero and Black Girls Run! member Stephane Cole of Cordova, Tenn. who found her "reason to run" in the story of a patient family with three children being treated at St. Jude. In the midst of training for her first half marathon, Cole was diagnosed with the debilitating disease lupus, which became her second reason to run – for her own health.

"She has three kids in treatment at St. Jude and I have two healthy kids," said Cole. "Suddenly, lupus took a back seat and I was running to save the lives of kids and to save my own life." So inspired, this year Cole plans to run the full marathon.

Last year St. Jude Heroes raised more than $8.2 million for St. Jude kids. The St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend is one of the only major marathons where the funds raised go to a single charity, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

To learn more or register for the race as a St. Jude Hero, visit stjudemarathon.org.

About the St. Jude Memphis Marathon® Weekend
Since 2002, the event has been produced in partnership with the Memphis Runners Track Club and presenting sponsor Juice Plus and now features a marathon, half marathon, marathon relay, the Memphis Grizzlies House 5K, kids marathon and family fun run. Funds are raised from the event primarily through St. Jude Heroes, a special group of race participants who raise funds by obtaining pledges from friends and family. More than $33.9 million has been raised through the St. Jude Heroes program for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. For more information, visit stjudemarathon.org.

About St. Jude Children's Research Hospital®
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other deadly diseases. St. Jude has the world's best survival rates for the most aggressive childhood cancers, and treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to 80 percent since we opened more than 50 years ago. St. Jude is working to drive the overall survival rate for childhood cancer to 90 percent in the next decade. St. Jude freely shares the breakthroughs we make, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children. Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live. Join the St. Jude mission by visiting stjude.org or following St. Jude on facebook.com/stjude and twitter.com/stjude.

About Juice Plus+®
Juice Plus+ has been the presenting sponsor of the St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend since 2002. With juice powder concentrates from 25 different fruits, vegetables and grains, Juice Plus+ is whole food based nutrition in an easy to take capsule or chewable form that helps bridge the gap between what you should eat and what you do eat every day. In addition to supporting the St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend through monetary donations, Juice Plus+ hosts the Spirit Station at the 10-mile mark in front of the St. Jude Target House, where volunteers cheer on race participants with song and dance. Both St. Jude and Juice Plus+ are deeply invested in children's health. In support of children everywhere, Juice Plus+ created the Juice Plus+ Children's Foundation and Children's Health Study. To learn more about the Juice Plus+ Company mission of inspiring healthy living around the world visit www.JuicePlus.com.

About Landers Ford
Landers Ford is the official vehicle of the St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend. Landers Ford is making a $25 donation in the name of anyone who test drives a Ford vehicle.

Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140505/83975

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