Bree and Mark Pearce wait at the start line of the 2018 Harbin Clinic Leprechaun-a-thon at Bridgepoint Plaza. / John Bailey

Last year, the Leprechaun-a-thon had more than 1,500 people walking and running in the St. Patrick’s Day themed race and this year looks to be another win.

There are already 1,200 people pre-registered to participate in the race on March 16. According to Harbin Clinic press release, the event is geared toward providing a fun, family-friendly environment that encourages healthy activity and benefits the Rome-Floyd Parks and Recreation Department. This year, all funds raised from the 5K will go directly to youth sports scholarships.

“Over the years, Harbin Clinic has been proud to be the presenting sponsor of this race and help Rome-Floyd Parks and Recreation raise money for their programs,” said Kenna Stock, Harbin Clinic CEO said in a press release. “The recreation department helps many children get introduced to an active lifestyle and we’re happy that every cent raised in this year’s Leprechaun-a-thon will go toward scholarships.”

“Thousands of kids enroll in our sports programs each year that include T-ball, baseball, softball, Unified Football and cheerleading, volleyball, basketball and gymnastics,” said Todd Wofford, Interim Director of RFPRD said in a press release.

But while steps have been taken to reduce the cost of participation some families still find it difficult to to foot the bill.

“The money raised from this race will help lessen that burden on families who qualify for assistance so more kids can have the chance to play and be active,” Wofford said in the release.

Through these events like the Leprechaun-a-thon, Harbin Clinic has raised more than $100,000 for Rome-Floyd Parks and Recreation programs.

Online registration for the Harbin Clinic Leprechaun-a-thon ends Tuesday at midnight at rfpra.com. It costs $25 to run and $20 to walk. It also costs $20 per person to register as a group of 10 or more. Race day registration will start at 6 p.m. at Bridgepoint Plaza and will cost $30 to run and $25 to walk.

The race is chip-timed and starts at 7:30 p.m. at Bridgepoint Plaza with the health walk starting a few minutes afterward.

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