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StellarOne Drumstick Dash Becoming an Annual Favorite

Runners from last year’s Drumstick Dash make their way down Jefferson Street.

It sounds a bit like putting the cart before the horse – getting out for some exercise before the big Thanksgiving meal — but in our city that is fast becoming a much-anticipated tradition, as this year 10,000 people are anticipated to “move their feet so others can eat” as part of the fifth annual StellarOne Drumstick Dash.

The event, which benefits the Rescue Mission, is held at 9 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning.  Runners, walkers, babies in strollers, dogs on leashes and volunteers are signing up now to help provide food, shelter, medical care, case management, recovery programs, clothing and more for as many as 360 people in Mission shelters each night.

This year’s number is up from the 7,500 total participants who took part in the 2009 Drumstick Dash.  With demand for services in the Women and Children’s Center up 22%, the StellarOne Drumstick Dash will make a significant difference for the Rescue Mission, where each day, emergency shelter, food, medical care and recovery programs are provided for families in crisis.

The route is located in beautiful downtown Roanoke, ending at the historic Farmer’s Market.  This is the one event and the one day that downtown streets can be closed for an event of this magnitude.

There will be groups of musicians performing all along the route for the enjoyment of the runners and walkers.

The event seems to be gaining in momentum and popularity.   Last year, families from 34 different states came together to make this the largest road race in the region and Roanoke’s biggest family reunion.     Participants include runners and walkers from grandparents to moms and dads with babies in strollers and dogs on leashes.

Over 65 corporate sponsors, churches and media partners provide financial support and in-kind donations to make the StellarOne Drumstick Dash possible. All proceeds from the StellarOne Drumstick Dash benefit The Rescue Mission. Your gift really counts because the Rescue Mission does not accept Federal, State or City funds.

According to the Mission, an anticipated $225,000 will be raised from the Dash, proving that we can ALL “move our feet so others can eat!”

The registration fee for walkers is $15 and $30 for runners.  “Well-behaved” dogs on leashes and babies in strollers are $10. Registration continues until 8 a.m. Thanksgiving Day at the Rescue Mission. On-line registration closes at midnight on Friday, Nov. 19.

To register or get more information, go to or stop by the Rescue Mission, located at 402 Fourth Street, SE, or call 540-343-7227.

The Mission is open 24 hours a day–365 days a year. Since its origin in 1948, The Rescue Mission, a Christian Crisis Intervention Center, has consistently served all people in need, regardless of race, creed, gender, age or ethnicity.

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