Runners and walkers celebrated the lunar new year by taking part in the sold-out inaugural International Community Health Services (ICHS) Lunar New Year 5K Run/Walk event on Sunday, Feb. 7, at Mercer Slough Nature Park in Bellevue.
Brisk but dry and clear weather greeted the 5K participants, who enjoyed a morning of physical activity, friendly competition, camaraderie, and raising much needed funds to support ICHS programs and activities. The event raised over $21,000.
“We opened our Bellevue clinic in 2014, in the Crossroads neighborhood only a few miles from here. This event is partly to celebrate our new presence on the Eastside and raise money for uncompensated patient care at our clinics,” ICHS CEO Teresita Batayola said.
To kick off the race, members of the Mak Fai Lion Dance Team performed an energetic dance. Cancer survivors, including community advocate Al Sugiyama, were recognized at the event. A number of runners from the Silver Striders, a statewide group of runners and walkers over 50, were represented, since the race has been listed as part of their Grand Prix race series. Photographer Sherwin Eng volunteered his time to take pictures of the event, in honor of the late Donnie Chin, director of the International District Emergency Center, who was gunned down by still unidentified assailants in the International District on July 23, 2015.
A number of sponsors donated resources to help make the event a success, including: East West Bank (Platinum sponsor); Amerigroup and Coordinated Care (Gold sponsors); Overlake Medical Center (Silver sponsor); Merchants Parking Association, National Association of Community Health Centers, Robert Chinn Foundation, Seattle Chinatown-International District Preservation Development Authority, State Farm (Bronze sponsors); Café Ladro, Evergreen Trail Runs, QuickMedical, Shoes N Feet. Tsue Chong Company, and Viet Wah (In-Kind sponsors).
To check out pictures from the event, go to the ICHS Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/supportichs
For more information about ICHS, please visit: www.ichs.com
Photo Caption: (Top photo) Teresita Batayola shares some remarks before the start of the 2016 ICHS Lunar New Year 5K. (Bottom photo) The sold-out event brought out both competitive and leisure runners and walkers to Mercer Slough Nature Park in Bellevue on Sunday, Feb. 7.