Down Syndrome Association of Central Oklahoma to host virtual 5K and awareness parade Sept. 26
Due to COVID-19, the Down Syndrome Association of Central Oklahoma's annual 5K will be held virtually on Sept. 26.
Also, in lieu of the usual awareness walk, a car parade will take place in downtown Oklahoma City to spread awareness.
This decision was not taken lightly, but the priority of DSACO is always the safety of families, loved ones with Down syndrome, 5K runners, volunteers and those who help put on the event, a news release stated.
This is the 26th year for the annual event, which attracts more than 6,000 people to celebrate acceptance and inclusion for individuals with Down syndrome. The virtual 5K will take place starting upon registration, ending at noon Sept. 26, allowing runners to enter their virtual time at their convenience. The entry fee is $40, and each runner will receive a T-shirt and the profile of a person who has Down syndrome to inspire their “run for a purpose.”
This year, family teams, volunteers and community members are encouraged to decorate their vehicles to participate in the “Parade of Inclusion” to celebrate the individual and not the diagnosis. There is no fee to participate in the parade, and all are welcome. DSACO will host a contest for the best decorated vehicle.
The parade will begin at 10 a.m. at the corner of Oklahoma City Boulevard and Robinson Avenue. The route will continue north to Sheridan Avenue and toward the west, where it will proceed in front of the Myriad Botanical Gardens. “Spirit Volunteers” will line the sidewalks of the parade route, socially distanced, to cheer on families throughout the parade.
“We are inspired by our families to continue to host such an important event and bring awareness to Down syndrome,” Executive Director Sarah Soell said. “We hope the community will continue to support us virtually and celebrate with us in our Parade of Inclusion.”
DSACO serves more than 900 families in the central Oklahoma area. Its mission is to raise awareness and provide resources, as well as promote acceptance and inclusion for people with Down syndrome. For more information about DSACO awareness events, including the virtual 5K and parade, go to www.dsfestivaland5k.com. Click on the "Registration" tab to register for the 5K or the parade or to make a donation.