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‘Stair climb’ to raise funds for American Lung Association

By Staff | Jan 29, 2010

The American Lung Association will host a unique fundraising event in May where participants undergo a stairclimb.
While most fundraising events are a 5km walk or run, the ALA decided to offer a twist and model a stairclimbing contest after others hosted across the United States. Local participants will raise money from sponsors and climb 30 floors and 514 steps up the highest tower at High Point Place on May 1 in Fort Myers.
“It is going to b a different event for us,” said Kurt Goerke, regional director of the Gulfcoast Chapter of the ALA. “Instead of doing the walks and runs that a lot of charities have done for years, we’ve tried doing a different twist.”
Other ALA chapters across the country have hosted stairclimbing events in skyscrapers, stadiums and arenas, but the 2010 Fight for Air Climb will be in a residential condominium.
Georke said it is being referred to as a vertical race, yet not everybody who participates has to ascend the stairs as quickly as possible. Participants range from children to survivors of lung cancer and even members of local fire departments.
“Around the country a lot of fire departments have gotten involved in the event, they have climbed it because they need to do it in their job or an emergency situation,” he said.
Firefighters from Southwest Florida will suit up and climb the stairs of High Point Place, he said, not only to support the fight against lung cancer but also to practice reaching people in a high rise. Georke added that the running club from Island Park Elementary has also agreed to make the climb.
He said stairclimbing is more challenging than many participants believe. Different muscle groups are used to climb stairs and he said it should be an exciting time for everyone involved.
“Even for some runners, they find the stairs are a different set of muscle groups to conquer,” he said.
The ALA will also host an after party in the pool deck area of the tower. Their goal is to raise $70,000 to help fund what the association does in the community. Sponsors include BB&T, Clear Channel Radio, Microwave Inc., and Rene’s Restaurant.
Registration for the event will continue until the week before May 1.
The fee to participate is $25 and climbers should raise $100.
For more information on the event or to register, visit www.FightForAirClimbFtMyers.org or call 908-2680.