Race for the Cure celebrates 22 years at Hildene
MANCHESTER -- The 2014 Komen Vermont Race for the Cure, on Sept.20, will be the 22nd race held at Hildene Meadows. After this year’s race, Komen will be folding its tents and heading for new digs in the Manchester area as the Meadows is soon to be returned to its original agricultural use. Now’s the time to enjoy this beautiful Battenkill Valley course, dotted with farmhouses and grazing horses, one more time.
"We have always been proud to host the Race. It’s meant a lot to us to be able to give of ourselves for such a worthy cause," said Seth Bongartz, Hildene’s president. "We’ve also always known that we wanted to bring the entire Hildene property under our mission umbrella, but we wanted to have the Race here as long as possible, until we truly needed the land. And we’ve now reached that point."
"It’s been a pleasure," added Bongartz. "The Race has been a good partner and we part ways with fond memories."
"Hildene has been nothing but gracious and accommodating during our long association," said Becky Burke, Komen VT-NH’s president. "In fact, I suspect they’ve let us stay on for a few years beyond when they really wanted to return the land to its original use. I really can’t say enough good things about Hildene."
Terry Farkas, Komen VT-NH’s executive director, sees the move as a new beginning.
"The site’s important, absolutely," added Burke. "But it’s not the main thing. The folks who come to the Race -- the ‘lifers’ who come year after year and the first-timers alike -- come because they’re passionate about fighting breast cancer. Remember, 75 percent of all the money raised at the Race underwrites breast cancer education, screening and treatment programs in Vermont and New Hampshire. Earlier this year we were able to grant $350,000 to 11 breast health organizations in the two states. The remaining 25 percent went to breast cancer research. That’s what it’s all about. That’s the main thing."