Komen Race Preview - KALB-TV News Channel 5 & CBS 2

Komen Race Preview

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ALEXANDRIA, La. -- Preparations are underway for the Komen Cenla Race for the Cure in downtown Alexandria.

News Channel Five's Brooke Buford caught up with a runner and race organizers for a preview of Saturday's race.

Fred Ruggles will trade his business suit for running gear Saturday morning when he runs in the Komen Cenla Race for the Cure.

"Just the opportunity to come out and run for breast cancer awareness and what it stands for," said Ruggles. "When you really think about saving lives, to me that opportunity in itself in our community is what's pretty awesome."

He and thousands of others will hit the streets of downtown Alexandria for the third year of the race, one that benefits the entire Cenla community.

"That's one of the key things," he said. "You see so many survivors, whether they're running or walking is just an inspiration to see the pink and understand what it stands for. It does effect each one of our lives."

Race organizers say come early Saturday morning the real work will begin - blowing up balloons and setting up barricades for all the runners and walkers looking to make an impact.

"It looks great. We're going to have a little bit less number of participants than we had last year," said Lawrence Searcy, race co-chair. "But, at the same time, our fundraising efforts are way above where they were last year. And, that's what really matters. The dollars that we're raising are so important and it's what we really use to battle the disease or assist those people who are fighting the disease right now."

"We actually have 17 races just this weekend alone," said Melissa Aucoin, director of the race series for Komen headquarters. "And, Alexandria is just as important to us as, you know DC or San Francisco. It's really just the receptiveness that we have received in coming out to the Alexandria area and just seeing how warm and generous these folks are down here."

And even in a smaller city like Alexandria, the goal is to make a big difference when it comes to breast cancer research and finding a cure.

"It's hard to believe so many people get in such a small area right here and all take off together," said Ruggles. "To see all the pink around the community, it just makes you want to smile."

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