The 17th annual Central Maine Heart Walk will take place on Sunday, September 13th in Lewiston/Auburn to benefit the American Heart Association (AHA). The AHA’s largest event in Central Maine, the Heart Walk draws approximately 1,200 walkers who together raised more than $127,000 last year. This year’s goal is $175,000.
“When you join Heart Walk, you join more than a million people in more than 300 cities across the United States in taking a stand against heart disease and helping to save lives,” said Tina Legere, President of Central Maine Medical Center and 2015 Heart Walk Co-Chair. “Central Maine Medical Center is proud to be the Red Cap sponsor honoring our community’s heart disease survivors and we traditionally have had the largest employee walk team.”
“Embracing a healthier lifestyle is one of the best gifts we can give ourselves and those we love,” said Kevin Lewis, Chief Executive Officer of Community Health Options and 2015 Heart Walk Co-Chair. “Physical activity plays a major role in preventing both heart disease and stroke, which is the leading, preventable cause of disability. Walking is one of the easiest ways to start an exercise routine and has the lowest dropout rate of any physical activity.”
Walkers will embark on either a 1-mile or 5K walk along the L/A Trails Riverwalk. The event also includes a 5K “Fun Run”. There will be music, water and snacks at the start and end of the walk. Central Maine Medical Center will provide free blood pressure screenings. Children will enjoy a bungee trampoline, face painting and other activities in the Kids Zone.
In addition to the main event in Lewiston/Auburn, a companion walk will be held in Rumford to reach a broader geographical area within Central Maine. Volunteers raised over $4,000 at the Rumford Heart Walk last year with about 140 walkers. Sandy Witas of River Valley Healthy Communities Coalition is leading that effort.
The 2015 Heart Walk Executive Committee includes: Jim Bouchard, Androscoggin Home Care and Hospice; Adam Dunbar, Wells Fargo Advisors; Jeff Gosselin, Mechanics Savings Bank; Kelly David, Central Maine Orthopedics; Allison Beane, The Hampton inn; Laurie Kane-Lewis, DFD Russell Medical Center; Susan Keiler, St. Mary’s Health System; Jonathan Labonte, Mayor of Auburn; Cindie Rice, Central Maine Medical Center; and Ashlee Vandiver, Sandcastle and L/A Hearing.
Local Heart Walk sponsors are: Central Maine Medical Family, My Heart My Life Sponsor; East Coast Mortgage Group, Top Walker Sponsor; Oxford Networks, Balloon Arch Sponsor; Pediatric Associates, Kids Zone Sponsor; Hannaford Supermarkets (who is also providing water and snacks), National Eating Healthy Day Sponsor; Community Health Options, Selfie Station Sponsor; St Mary’s Health System, Lifestyle Change Sponsor; and Mechanic Savings Bank, the Hydration Station Sponsor. The event’s media partners are Channel 8 WMTW, The Sun Journal, and WPOR FM. The Heart Walk is presented nationally by SUBWAY restaurants (who also will provide lunch). In addition, Petco has donated dog treats.
To register and fundraise online for either the Lewiston/Auburn or Rumford Heart Walk visit: www.centralmaineheartwalk.org or call the AHA Maine office at (207) 289-2394.
Our mission is to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. For nearly 100 years, we’ve been fighting heart disease and stroke, striving to save and improve lives. Heart disease is the No. 1 killer worldwide, and stroke ranks second globally. Even when those conditions don’t result in death, they cause disability and diminish quality of life. We want to see a world free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.