9th Annual Dusty 5K Run Saturday, Benefits Student Scholarships

Lace up those runners, get out those shorts and head for Texas A&M International University this Saturday for the Dusty 5K Run and Walk supporting student scholarships.

Now entering its 9th year of running, the Dusty 5K is one of the University's most important student scholarship fundraisers and attracts runners and walkers from throughout south Texas and northern Mexico. Some 68% of TAMIU students receive financial assistance to attend the University.

This year, the "Dusty 5K" hopes to attract greater participation by professional runners, said organizers TAMIU coaches Tarvish Felton and Sandra Forestier.

"We're responding to requests from many runners throughout the area for a competitive event that will afford them a great running opportunity in advance of some major regional races, which also appeals to their desire to help our students to benefit from scholarships," explained Felton, who coaches the University's men's basketball team.

Cash prizes will be awarded in the professional category for both women and men in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places. Prizes range from $200- $500.

Also of interest will be the presence of a number of health promotions representatives.

Scheduled to be on hand for demonstrations, exhibits or information provision are: the Laredo Medical Center, American Heart Association, Innovative Physical Therapy, Sleep and Seizure Center, Aventis, Natrecor and the Body Factory.

Amateur runners and 5K walkers form the core of the popular event, said Dr. George Garcia, honorary chairman of the Dusty 5K Run.

"Running or walking the Dusty 5K is a strong alumni tradition here and one that we continue to encourage. The Dusty 5K has become a real family event and a chance for alumni to network with fellow graduates, visit with former faculty and get caught up on the University's growth and development," he explained.

After Oct. 27, entry fees are $35 for professional runners; $30 for amateur runners and $15 for walkers. All participants receive a special TAMIU Dusty 5K T-shirt.

Races will start at the campus on Saturday, Nov. 1 at 8 a.m. Late registration for the event will be possible on the day of the event, beginning at 7 a.m.

Corporate sponsorship for the event is by the McPherson Medical Center.

For registration and additional sponsorship opportunities, call 326.2175 or e-mail rsvpevents@tamiu.edu A downloadable application form is also available online at the University's web page at www.tamiu.edu

For additional information, contact Felton at 326.2903 or tfelton@tamiu.edu or Forestier at 326.2901 or sforestier@tamiu.edu

TAMIU office hours are from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday-Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at pais@tamiu.edu