Jingle Bell Run honors local youth with arthritis; Chris’s Champions raise awareness and funds

Jingle Bell Run Elves, Salt Lake City, Utah, undated | Photo courtesy of the Arthritis Foundation

ST. GEORGE – Bring your running shoes and Christmas spirit to Vernon Worthen Park for the 5k Jingle Bell Run/Walk on Dec. 8, benefiting the Arthritis Foundation.

The event helps spread awareness for arthritis, while raising funds for research, health education and government advocacy to improve the lives of people with the disease. Participants are encouraged to don festive holiday costumes, tie jingle bells to their shoes and join the community for this fun event.

Arthritis is much more widespread than imagined, affecting approximately 50 million Americans. Over 415,000 Utahns suffer from the disease, 3,000 of whom are children.

Chris Cloud | Photo courtesy of the Arthritis Foundation

The Honoree of the 2012 Jingle Bell Run/Walk is 14-year-old Chris Cloud, who was diagnosed with Polyarticular Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis in February 2010. Once an active hiker, soccer player and Cub Scout, Cloud now has difficulty even walking.

“It has been a huge lifestyle change for me as a young man,” Cloud said in a statement on his web page. “It (hasn’t been) an easy road. So many people do not realize that kids and teens get arthritis (too.)”

Family and friends of Cloud will be running together and raising funds in honor of his brave ongoing journey with arthritis. Their team, Chris’s Champions, is aiming to earn $10,000.

“Being the honoree is such an exciting adventure for me,” Cloud said in his statement. “I am so proud to have been chosen to share my story and support the work of the Arthritis Foundation.”

Participants can register as an individual or as teams online. There are two classes in the 5k: Times Rudolph’s Runners or untimed Santa’s Striders. A 1k Kids’ Fun Run will also be held. The event spans from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.; a detailed schedule can be found on the website.

Please enjoy the Chris’s Champions | JIA Awareness YouTube (event detail recap below)


Event details and contact information

Date: Dec. 8

Time: 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Location: Vernon Worthen Park

Admission: $25 per runner, $10 per Kids Run Fun participant

Contact: Alison Tuft – 801-536-0990 or [email protected]

Submitted by: Arthritis Foundation

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @STGnews

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