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In the photo, runners and walkers start the Tootsie Roll 5K Run/Walk in 2021. All proceeds will go to classes in special education in Madison City Schools. CONTRIBUTED

Knights of Columbus’ Tootsie Roll 5K Run/Walk to benefit MCS special ed

MADISON – A foot race through Madison’s downtown streets will benefit children with special needs.

Knights of Columbus (Councils 10232 and 17519) at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church are presenting the fifth annual Tootsie Roll 5K Run/Walk on Nov. 5.

The event will benefit students with special learning needs in Madison City Schools. MCS will receive 100 percent of event proceeds.

This Madison event is part of a nationwide campaign that Knights of Columbus sponsor. The fundraiser’s name refers to Knights of Columbus members giving a piece of candy to individuals who donate to collection drives. The project’s official name is “Campaign for People with Intellectual Disabilities.”

USA Track and Field has certified the 5K’s new course. Tootsie Roll Run/Walk organizers thank city officials for approving the route that meanders through city streets.

“Know that by participating, you are contributing to your local community. We especially want to give a shoutout to those who have participated in the past, and we hope that you will continue to support our race and the students of the MCS Special Education Program,” organizers said.

Potential donors who can’t attend the event can still donate to the cause.

The starting and finish lines will be at Madison City Schools Stadium, 211 Celtic Drive. Runners will merge onto Celtic Drive and continue north to Lanier Road and meander through downtown to reach Church Street. The course then will turn east (right) on Mill Road and continue to Hughes Road, where runners will go south (right). The course turns west (right) at Will Halsey Way and continues to Celtic Drive to return to the stadium.

Hogan Brown will serve as 2022 Race Ambassador. Brown, a senior at James Clemens High School, has served as Top Gun Mascot for basketball and football games from 2020-2022.

Brown participated in the 2020 Special Olympics Basketball Team that won gold for their division. This year, Hogan began running in summer and joined James Clemens Cross Country Team to continue his healthy lifestyle.

When he was five years old, Brown was diagnosed with PDD-NOS/autism/MMR/juvenile seizure disorder. Since then, he has endured countless hours of therapies, such as speech/language therapy, occupational therapy and applied behavioral therapy.

Brown has outgrown juvenile seizure disorder. He has changed his path into a regular high school diploma. Brown now is focused on post-graduate plans.

Three options are available for packet pick-up: Fleet Feet, 181 Hughes Road, Nov. 3, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Black Patch Distilling, 500 Lanier Road, Suite 3C, Nov. 4, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and race day, MCS Stadium, 211 Celtic Drive, 7 a.m.

Race registration fee is $30, plus sign-up fee of $2.74. Registration deadline is Nov. 1 at 11:59 p.m.

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