Register for Friends of Aine Kid’s Try-athlon

Registration is open for the fourth annual Friends of Aine Kid’s Try-athlon set for Sunday, Aug. 14, in Bedford. The only event of its kind in the area, the try-athlon is designed specifically for children ages 4-15 years, in memory of Aine Phillips.

Aine died on Aug. 10, 2010. She was 8 years old. Her death was caused by a disease called Pulmonary Veno Occlusive Disease. Although uncommon, this disease is a cause of Pulmonary Hypertension. Aine’s surviving sister, Bella, was 5 years old when Aine passed away. The Friends of Aine Foundation, a 501c(3) nonprofit organization established in 2013, was formed to help grieving children. The mission of the foundation is to raise funds to build centers of support, safety and compassion for children, like Aine’s sister, who may feel alone because their brother or sister or mother or father died too soon.

The kid’s try-athlon event was created to help raise these much needed funds. Aine’s favorite activities included swimming, biking, jump roping and running around with her friends.

"By incorporating Aine’s favorite things,we were able to create a unique event for children, while raising money to help other children who are coping with the death of a loved one, just like Bella," said Christine Phillips, Aine and Bella’s mom and Friends of Aine co-founder.

Total proceeds from the event will be granted to the Good Grief program at Home Health & Hospice Care in Merrimack to expand its existing bereavement support services for children in southern New Hampshire.

To date, the Friends of Aine Foundation has granted $50,000 to HHHC for this cause. The goal of the foundation is to establish a permanent center for grieving children in Aine’s name and a capital campaign is underway to purchase a property.

Beginning at the Bedford town pool and ending at the Bedford High School, participants ages 4-10 years will swim 25 yards, bike 1 mile and run a ½ mile. Older participants ages 11-15 years will swim 50 yards, bike 2 miles and run 1 mile. Official race times for all participants are recorded by Millennium Running. At the finish line, families can enjoy music, jump roping, an obstacle course, face painting, a selfie station, concessions, raffle prizes and more. Last year’s event attracted more than 300 participants and 150 volunteers.

Event sponsors, volunteers and donations are always needed. Visit www.friendsofaine.com, contact Christine Phillips at 305-3205, or info@friendsofaine.com for more information.

The Friends of Aine Foundation is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization. For more information or to register, visit www.friendsofaine.com or www.facebook.com/friendsofaine.