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Go the Distance to Do Good

Rack up the miles for good bodies, good causes

        Whether you’re trying to get into better shape, logging steps and miles on your activity tracker or seeking some friendly competition, this weekend has got you covered. Each of three walk/run races helps you do good for your body and for a great cause.
 
27th SPCA Walk for the Animals
      Annapolis goes to the dogs in the Anne Arundel County SPCA’s largest fundraising event of the year. This nonprofit agency depends solely on donations to care for the more than 500 cats, dogs, rabbits, guinea pigs, ferrets, gerbils, birds, chinchillas, hamsters, hedgehogs, mice, turtles, rats and geckos at the shelter or in foster homes.
       “We rely on this fundraiser to pay for things like medical care for all those animals,” says education outreach coordinator Tricia Crawford. “Last year we spent $80,000 on taking care of our animal’s medical needs. Even just to feed them takes a lot of money.”
      The Walk for the Animals is a 5K fun walk/run race and a community gathering, bringing food trucks, entertainment and vendors to Quiet Waters Park.
      “It’s a big party, truthfully,” says Crawford. “And it’s also a continuation of what the shelter has been doing and helps dispel myths about the animals we take in and help. We take in animals from all over the country. We are a no-kill shelter, so that means we keep the animals until we find them the right home.
      Crawford credits the animal-loving community with making that mission a 97 percent success. 
       “It’s the dedication of the staff, fosters and volunteers,” she says. “It’s not a glamorous life; we have people that come in just to wash laundry. It’s that passion that makes this all work.” 
       Runners and leashed dogs take off on the Fun Run (7:30am) or walk (9am) through wooded trails; then head down to booths, where you can watch K-9 demonstrations, try a dog agility course, visit the Cars & Critters Car Show and Bay Weekly’s table, enjoy the kids area, shop for treats and, of course, meet and adopt a new animal companion.
Sunday, May 6, Quiet Waters Park, Annapolis, $30 ­runner fee includes T-shirt, rsvp: www.aacspca.org.
 
6th annual Bay-CSS Walk, Run & Roll
      Race to benefit the differently-abled community in St. Mary’s County with Bay Community Support Services, which has provided personalized services to adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities for 30 years. Help create independent and meaningful lives for even more people by running in the timed and competitive 10K or 5K, or take a more leisurely pace with your kids and pets in the non-timed 5K fun run/walk/roll on a wheelchair-accessible course. Light runner’s breakfast served by Panera Bread, IHOP and Starbucks. 
Saturday May 5, 8am registration, 9am race, Greenwell State Park, Hollywood, $35, rsvp: www.baycss.org/walk.
 
Chesapeake Health & Fitness Club’s 5K
        Run 3.1 miles through Deale, raising money for the Deale Volunteer Fire Department as you go. Live entertainment cheers you on your route. At start and finish, South County Café sells breakfast tacos and The Country Bakery sells coffee and donuts. Racers and supporters celebrate in post-race cool down with sno-cones and ice cream, a beer truck and moon bounce. 
Saturday May 5, 7:15 runner arrival, 8am race from Chesapeake Health & Fitness, Deale, $30, rsvp: www.eventbrite.com.