Updated 1:40 p.m.
There's still time to sign up for the first-ever Strawberry Stroll 5K race, which will be held on Saturday at 10 a.m. in Historic Norcross, sponsored by RockTenn and RTS Packaging.
The run is a benefit for Kindom Kids, a non-profit organization that works directly with kids in challenging circumstances to help fulfill wishes. The group has located a local child that they would like to support with the funds raised: Joshua Metz, a 10-year-old boy who was diagnosed with a brain tumor.
In a note, his mother recalls the agonizing process of finding out about the tumor, beginning in August of 2003 when Joshua was 3.
A doctor called the Metz's home after having a CT scan. "I honestly don’t remember much about that day or the following week, but I do remember the moment of realization when I understood our lives had been changed dramatically," his mother wrote.
Joshua had 128 doses of chemotherapy during his treatment and two and a half years outpatient therapies to battle symptoms of the tumor and side-effects of the chemo. "Despite the many challenges of being sick for so long, he has managed to grow and thrive through it all," Ms. Metz wrote. "We have watched him overcome so much and develop great compassion towards others who are suffering."
She said that there are no promises for the future since the tumor is inoperable. They just hope to keep it stable. "However, we have chosen to live with joy and gratitude – and hope for the future," she said.
The non-profit is proud of the fact that there is no application process, unlike similar organizations, so all kids' wishes are accepted and there's no red tape to go through in a difficult time.
The organization describes itself as a "100 Percent Pass Through" organization, so every dollar that is donated goes directly to the cause. (Employees work on a volunteer basis.)
Race organizer Kris Rodgers of RTS Packaging is proud that the race is completely local. "We are a Norcross-based company and we found a Norcross-based child," he said. He said the city has been "completely, completely helpful" with every detail, from the Norcross Police coming up with a route to the downtown coordination.
The entrance fee for the race is $25. You can also purchase a T-shirt for $5 or make a charitable donation to the cause. Please register and make additional donations at this website
After the race, the Strawberry Stroll kicks off at 11 a.m. with a fresh crop of local, pesticide-free berries and loads of treats made from them. Local chefs will whip up special dishes using the ripe beauties as well.