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Runners invited to race to feed hungry


4-H leaders team up for 'win-win' project



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April 28, 2010
TRI-CITY AREA — Runners like to win the race and a Capac woman has come up with a win-win situation for all who enter a 5K Run/Walk slated for June.

The 'Project Clover 5K Run/Walk' is the brain child of Jennifer Miller of Capac who heads up the Alarro 4-H Club along with co-leader Becky DeHondt.

With the lagging economy, Miller and DeHondt noticed it was tougher for some of the kids in the 125-member club to continue with their livestock projects for the Armada Fair.

They decided to try to raise funds to help some of the kids out—by purchasing their animals at the fair auction and then donating the meat to area food pantries.

"Most kids don't really make any money on their project, some actually lose money," Miller says. "With the economy being bad we thought 'what if we asked some companies or businesses that don't buy animals at the fair to donate and then put all the money together to buy an animal?'"

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Alarro 4-H Club member Kayla Evans with livestock projects at last year’s fair.

It was a good question—and it got a great response.

Miller says local businesses and organizations contributed $4,700 last year, and club members sold $1,200 worth of candy bars a dollar at a time to help purchase livestock projects at the fair's end.

"Last year we bought a steer, a pig and a half, two lambs and five pens of poultry," Miller says.

The animals were processed and the meat donated to food pantries in Capac, Armada, Romeo, Richmond and New Haven.

"It helps the (4-H) kids because not everyone has a buyer and it helps feed hungry people in the area," Miller says. "It's basically a win-win situation."

Miller says people have been generous with their donations, and she's hoping the momentum will continue with the Project Clover 5K race.

A runner herself, Miller says she and DeHondt decided to try hosting a race to raise funds. They're hoping to sign up 200 participants. Sponsors' names will appear on t-shirts participants will receive.

Fees and sign-up information is available online at www.runmichigan.com. Click on 'events' and scroll down to June 5, 'Project Clover 5K Run/Walk.'

The pre-registration deadline is May 12. Participants may sign up on the day of the race for an added fee.

The race will begin at the Armada Fair Grounds and go through part of the picturesque Macomb Orchard Trail before winding back to the fairgrounds.

All proceeds will go to the Alarro 4-H Club livestock project/food pantry project.

The Alarro club includes members from the Tri-City area. Miller, who belonged to the club herself when she was growing up, explains the club name origins.

"The AL is for Almont, the AR is for Armada and the RO is for Romeo," she says.

For more information call Miller at 395-2257.

Catherine Minolli is Managing Editor of the Tri-City Times. She began as a freelance writer with the Times in 1994. She enjoys the country life, including raising ducks and chickens.
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