La Rena's Race Saturday, May 11, at French Ford Middle School

This weekend, all northern Nevada residents are invited to join “The La Rena Smith Bengoa Run, Ride or Walk for the Cure.”

The 17th annual event will take place on Saturday, May 11, at French Ford Middle School.

The race will begin at 10 a.m.; registration is from 8 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. Registration fees are $25 for adults, $20 for phantom racers, $20 for team members or senior citizens, and $10 for children under 10.

All registrants will receive a free goodie bag with a race t-shirt; a continental breakfast will also be available free of charge.

A Mother’s Day raffle will offer a beautiful cake, dinner tickets, a platter and bowls donated by Pioneer Woman, a handmade quilt and more.

A quilt raffle will offer up another handmade masterpiece, and the “Wheel of Fortune” game has its own bounty of prizes for lucky winners. Participants should also be sure to take part in this year’s amazing silent auction.

All proceeds from the race event go to help those in Humboldt and Lander counties who are undergoing cancer treatments.

The race courses are 1 mile, 3.1 miles (5K) or 5 miles long, and participants are encouraged to have fun and make the race their own.

There will be competitive runners and bikers, but also many who enjoy the course at their own pace. Strollers, bikes, wagons, carts, horses, golf carts or motorcycles are welcome!

Mary Maher Bengoa, who co-organizes the event with her mother Amorita Maher, said the past 17 years have shown how hope and commitment can help push back against cancer.

“As I look back over the years of this event, I am so excited to see where our organization and this event have come,” she said.

“It has been beautiful to see that feelings of sadness and frustration from not being to help a loved one beat cancer have turned into an active way to fight cancer and to change people's lives for the better.”

Bengoa said many of those who have received assistance have shared parts of their own private struggles.

“They have found such relief in receiving what little help we can provide; it drives our group to keep working to make funds available to those in need.”

Bengoa said that help wouldn't be possible without the local business and community members who give so generously.

“We can't thank them enough,” she said. “We appreciate all that they give and know that smaller donations from some are just as big a sacrifice as bigger gifts from others.”

Since 2003, the La Rena’s Race Foundation has distributed $340,000 to 280 cancer fighters in the Humboldt and Lander communities.

Applications for assistance and more information are available by visiting the group’s website at larenasrace.org, or by calling Mary Bengoa at (775) 374-0900, or Reme Huttman at (775) 530-6768.

Donations may be made online at larenasrace.org.

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