BLOOMINGTON — The annual Bloomington/Normal Race for the Cure will have a new name and a new focus this year but the goals of raising awareness of breast cancer and money for breast cancer research, programs and services remain.
The ninth annual event has been renamed the Komen Bloomington/Normal More Than Pink Walk and there will be no timed race this year, said Katie Parker, public relations/marketing director of the Susan G. Komen Memorial Affiliate, which presents the annual event.
Instead, the event will include a walk and will have information focusing on how money raised by Komen goes to research, especially to combat metastatic (aggressive) cancer, as well as local programs and services, Parker said.
The Komen Memorial Affiliate, which covers 36 Central Illinois counties, including McLean, unveiled the changes Wednesday night during a team captains' meeting at Altitude Trampoline Park in Bloomington.
The changes are rooted in Komen's goal to reduce breast cancer deaths in the United States by 50 percent by 2026. Komen hopes to achieve that goal by focusing research dollars on metastatic cancer, Parker said.
Changes also resulted from feedback from Race for the Cure participants, she said. Most participants walked rather than ran. In addition, some participants didn't know a lot about what Komen did beyond organize the race.
"We learned that we had an opportunity to teach people about what Komen does beyond planning this event," she said.
Changes also are an attempt to revitalize the annual event, which raised $66,572 and had 602 participants last year. Numbers were higher several years ago.
The Komen Bloomington/Normal More Than Pink Walk will be Sept. 7 on the State Farm Corporate South campus, with the walk site opening at 7:30 a.m. Online registration, at www.komenmemorial.org, is free Thursday and Friday, then increases to $10 beginning Saturday, Parker said.