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Inaugural Paper Chase 5K Run translates to teachers’ supplies

Runners leave the starting line at Constitution Hall Village for the inaugural Paper Chase 5K Run, which raised funds to buy teachers' supplies for the Free 2 Teach store. (Contributed / J C Medeiros Photography)
Runners leave the starting line at Constitution Hall Village for the inaugural Paper Chase 5K Run, which raised funds to buy teachers’ supplies for the Free 2 Teach store. (Contributed / J C Medeiros Photography)

HUNTSVILLE – Ice-cold temperatures didn’t thwart the commitment or determination of participants on Feb. 18 in the inaugural Paper Chase 5K Run, which benefited the Free 2 Teach organization.

The run started at Constitution Hall Village and proceeded through downtown Huntsville. “After the snow of this past week, it was very neat to see runners on clear asphalt with snow still on the lawns,” Free 2 Teach publicist Missy Ming Smith said.

Free 2 Teach Executive Director Eula Battle, who is a retired kindergarten teacher, wished runners well at the starting line, along with her husband Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle.

“We want to thank all of our sponsors, runners and volunteers who made this our first run possible,” Eula Battle said. The run is “another example of how very much our community cares about public education.”

Despite the cold weather, the runners’ spirits were warm as more than 130 participants registered and gathered at Constitution Hall Village. “This first run took action for our 3,500 public school classroom teachers and 50,000 students in Madison County’s three public school systems that Free 2 Teach helps year round,” Ming said.

Thus far this school year, more than 1,500 of those 3,500 teachers have shopped at the Free 2 Teach store located at 3054 Leeman Ferry Road in Huntsville. Teachers have selected free supplies valued at almost $500,000 to assist their students.

Individuals, organizations and businesses have donated all of the resource materials. “Absolutely amazing how this caring community steps up,” Ming said.

“Every year, teachers spend hundreds of dollars on supplies for their classrooms out of their own pockets,” volunteer Dana Trulock of Madison said. “Free 2 Teach helps to reduce that burden (for) teachers in Madison City, Huntsville City and Madison County school systems.”

To view run photos, visit jcmedeiros.com/2015free2teach5k. For more information, visit free-2-teach.org.

 

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