For Immediate Release
White Plains, NY - June 27, 2012 - Tap your inner superhero and grab your shield: the inaugural HERO-THON Half Marathon Series Powered by The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society takes flight this winter! The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), which has operated the world's biggest and most successful endurance sports training program, Team In Training (TNT), for the past 24 years, is now spreading its wings with this new endurance series of its own.
The HERO-THON Half Marathon kicks off with a half marathon in San Antonio, TX, on January 27, 2013, and will be open to all runners and walkers, whether they chose to participate through TNT or train on their own. Other venues around the country will be announced in the near future.
As its name suggests, the fun theme for the HERO-THON Half Marathon is unleashing your superpowers. Each of us has within us a set of powers we call upon to help us accomplish what might otherwise seem insurmountable. Some of us run and fundraise to help beat cancer, honor a loved one touched by cancer, or celebrate our own victory over cancer. Others want to accomplish a goal that once seemed out of reach, or are trying to improve upon a personal best. Whatever the motivation, we all have the potential to be a superhero. So don your masks and cape and tell us what you're fighting for!
"Running USA surveys show that the popularity of the half marathon has grown faster than any other endurance sport segment over the past six years, with more than 10 % growth in participation per year," said LLS CEO John Walter. "LLS aims to satisfy the nation's growing appetite for the 13.1 mile distance. With our history of building a successful endurance sports training program, and our long-time involvement with some of the most sought-after endurance events in the country, we are ready to put on a world-class event we can call our very own and continue to use this series to raise money to advance LLS's mission."
The San Antonio community is looking forward to hosting this inaugural event. San Antonio, a popular destination city with many exciting attractions, is also a great running city. In fact, USA Track & Field reports that San Antonio has the most runners per capita of any metro area in the U.S. There, 24 out of 100 people call themselves runners. That's 408,000 of a 1.59 mil population!
"San Antonio is a caring, conscientious city with a great reputation for staging major fitness events that promote healthy living," Mayor Julián Castro said. "We are delighted to host the HERO-THON Half Marathon to raise awareness for a great partner like The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society."
LLS's signature fundraising campaign, TNT, has trained more than 540,000 people who have raised more than $1.2 billion to fund blood cancer research and patient services since its inception. LLS, through TNT, has had an enormous impact on the growth of the endurance sports industry, and is uniquely qualified to take it to another level with this series.
"After 25 years of being involved in some of the top endurance events in the country, it's so gratifying that The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is now going to put on our own world-class series," said South Central Texas Chapter Executive Director Kathy Griesenbeck. "And there's no better place to start the series than right here in San Antonio, with a course that will take participants past some of the city's most famous landmarks."
LLS has contracted with DMSE, Inc. to direct the race series.
"The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is a great organization with a clear vision for their event," said Dave McGillivray, president and CEO of DMSE, Inc. (www.dmsesports.com) and race director of the B.A.A. Boston Marathon. "Half marathons are certainly growing in popularity because they can include experienced and inexperienced runners and walkers alike while raising much needed funds for a great cause. DMSE Sports is really looking forward to working with LLS on this new and exciting race."
About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society ® (LLS) is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.
Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.lls.org or contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET. www.lls.org.