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48th Bellin Run continues storied legacy at kick off event

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – Bellin Health kicked off its 48th Bellin Run Friday afternoon at Astor Park with race registration, a health and fitness expo, children’s activities, a pasta dinner, and a few runs. The long-running event has evolved, but even some of the people who founded it still have a hand in putting it together.

“We’ve been at this for 48 years,” Bellin Run executive director Randy Van Straten said. “Some of our team members that help put this race together, believe it or not, have helped put this race together, [they’ve] been with us all this time.”

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The event benefits Bellin Health, especially the Bellin College nursing students. Organizers say that COVID-19 caused a critical nursing shortage and that ensuring that students have the opportunity to enhance their careers is essential to providing quality health care in the community.

The familiar white tents poke above the Astor Park tree line, but every year, organizers work hard to ensure a fun lineup of activities and events. A giant inflatable heart for people to walk through was a fan favorite.

“Every year, we build on improvements and activities to help engage the community with our event,” Van Straten said.

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The main events on Saturday are the 5k and 10k, but other runners took center stage Friday afternoon with the Back to the Road Crew run for those recovering from surgery or illness, the Triumph Mile of Greatness featuring dozens of runners with disabilities and the Children’s Run.

Registration for the event closes 8 p.m. tonight, Friday, June 7 at Astor Park.

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