Ghost Runner 5K in Nashua benefits NH Breast Cancer Coalition

NASHUA – The New Hampshire Chapter of the National Association of Professional Women, in cooperation with the USA Track & Field Association’s sanctioning board, will present the third annual Ghost Runner 5K Road Race at 10 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 26, starting at Stellos Stadium.

All proceeds will remain in the state, benefiting the New Hampshire Breast Cancer Coalition’s Support Services Fund, giving financial assistance to low-income and uninsured New Hampshire residents with breast cancer.

“We are so pleased to see the Ghost Runner 5K continue as its founder, Bonnie Venuti-Kenney, hoped it would,” Breast Cancer Coalition President Nancy Ryan said .

“The significant monies raised the past two years have helped innumerable people across the state make ends meet in an already tough economy as they faced increased financial hardship due to the challenges of breast cancer treatment. We applaud the NAPW for stepping up to the plate.”

Participants of all ages, from elite to beginners, are invited to run or walk the course, rain or shine. Online preregistration is at www.ghostrunner5k.com.

Advance entry fees are $25 for adults and $15 for 12 and younger. The race-day fee is $30. Race logistics and timing management will be provided by 3C Race Productions, of Merrimack.

First-, second- and third-place medals will be awarded in all categories, and a best costume award will be presented by the NAPW.

The Ghost Runner 5K was the brainchild of Venuti-Kenney, a former Nashua resident who wanted to do “something big” for an organization that touched the lives of so many, including her good friend Elaine Meschino, a breast cancer survivor and former board member of the Breast Cancer Coalition.

An avid runner who enjoys the state’s crisp fall days, Venuti-Kenney began toying with the idea of an event around Halloween.

“Having lost my cousin and stepmother to the disease,” Venuti-Kenney said, “I couldn’t get the ‘ghost’ idea out of my head – that we would run for all the women who lost their battle with breast cancer and show our spirit for those courageous women actively fighting it, many of which needing financial help to do so.”

NAPW member and breast cancer survivor Carolyn Choate is race director.

“I am so proud to hold this honor as someone who knows firsthand the hardships physically, emotionally and financially that a diagnosis of cancer can create,” Choate said. “This is my way of giving back for all the support I received during my cancer journey.

“Needless to say, October is a very busy month for breast cancer fundraisers, and I applaud every single event because each one evolves in the heart of someone who cares enough to get involved, someone like Bonnie Venuti-Kenney. We’re going to work very hard to make her proud with a goal of $10,000 for the New Hampshire Breast Cancer Coalition. I know the coalition will use every penny to help people in need.”

Those wishing to contribute to NH Breast Cancer Coalition without participating in the event may do so online. For more information, call 533-4984 or 455-8585.