Second Annual Race/Walk to Benefit the Cure Autism Now Foundation
By Katlyn McGraw (March 2007)
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Two Penn State greek organizations are presenting the second annual We Are… Curing Autism Now 5K Run/3K Walk on April 14 to benefit the Cure Autism Now Foundation in downtown State College.
Beta Sigma Beta fraternity and Pi Beta Phi sorority are presenting the event with its sponsor, Magnum Broadcasting. The company played more than 700 commercials publicizing the inaugural event in 2006.
Faculty and students from the Special Education program in the College of Education are also involved in the effort.
The race/walk begins at noon, with registration at 11 a.m. outside the State College Municipal Building on South Allen Street.
Before March 21, the registration fee is $13 and guarantees a t-shirt. After March 21 the registration fee is $15.
Prizes for top individual fund-raisers include: $25 gift cards for iTunes, Best Buy, Metro, Barefoot, or Peoples Nation; $50 gift cards for Best Buy, Metro, Barefoot, or Peoples Nation; iPOD shuffles or $100 gift card to either Barefoot, People's Nation, or Metro.
Teams that raise more than $20,000 will receive a 50-inch flat screen television. Prizes will also be awarded to the top male and female performers in the 5K race. There will also be several auction items, including but not limited to: dinner with Penn State assistant football coaches, 2007 Penn State football tickets, and the opportunity to kick a field goal at Beaver Stadium.
Since the 2006 event with more than 550 participants, $127,000 has been raised for the Cure Autism Now Foundation. This year’s event has already raised $36,000. The magnitude of the event made it the largest event organized by a single fraternity and sorority pairing.
The Penn State College of Education makes continual efforts to improve efforts to serve children with autism spectrum disorders. The College is heavily involved in the annual National Autism Conference held each summer on the Penn State University Park campus. The conference began in 1998 with approximately 300 attendees. The 2006 conference saw more than 2,400 attendees eager to learn more about autism and the research being done on the subject.
The National Autism Conference is the largest conference held on the Penn State campus and is one of the largest meetings of its kind in the world. Doctors, psychologists, teachers, social workers, and of course, parents all attend the conference. It has proven to be largely successful, offering information for anyone who is touched by autism.