Duke Children’s Hospital Dance Dash 5k

Our community is very lucky to have access to tons of great hospitals and health care options.  Duke Children’s Hospital & Health Center is a wonderful institution down the road in Durham.  Duke Children’s provides everything from routine pediatric care to specialized treatment in over thirty specialties.

On Saturday, October 11, we have the chance to support the patients and families of Duke Children’s with a unique new fundraising event in downtown Durham called Dance Dash!  Also known as “the 5K with a twist”, Dance Dash is a 5K that challenges participants to walk or run a 5K while learning fun dance moves along the way. Each mile, participants will stop and learn a short dance. It could be anything from a swing dance to a country line dance to hip-hop, and we promise you are going to love it!  At the end of the 5K, participants put their new dance moves together for a flash-mob dance party at the finish line.

Dance Dash 5K is on Saturday, October 11.  The event starts and ends at Durham School of the Arts in downtown Durham.  The registration fee increases on Saturday, September 27 at midnight however blog readers can use the code MOMS to extend the early bird discount.  To learn more and to register, visit these great websites:

Duke Children’s hosted this event for the first time last year and received rave reviews.  Over 250 participants arrived on race day wearing neon colors, tutus, and snazzy socks.  The energy was sky high as participants boogied their way through the course.

Along with the bright colors and fancy dance moves, this race is unique in its family appeal.  First, the organizers made several choices to ensure the event is family-friendly:  kids age five and under are free, strollers are welcome, and the event is untimed so nobody has to rush through the course.  Second, Dance Dash is a great opportunity to teach your kids that “giving back” can also be a lot of fun!  Third, families from Duke Children’s will be at the event to thank participants as well as to share their Duke Children’s story.  You will leave this event knowing that you are supporting a good cause.

DSC_0098The first patient to share her story at Dane Dash is the 2014 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals North Carolina Champion, Kennedy.  Kennedy is a bright 12-year-old girl who dreams of becoming a marine biologist specializing in sharks. It may sound like Kennedy is your average 12-year old, but her story has been anything but that. Kennedy has led her family on a four-year, life-changing journey marked by perseverance and strength.

Kennedy was born with Goldenhar syndrome, a genetic anomaly that has affected her right side in many ways. She was born without a right ear or kidney. She has right-side facial paralysis and skeletal abnormalities. She also has an amazing ability to take these challenges in stride and continues to have hope! You can hear Kennedy’s full story at Dance Dash 5K on Saturday, October 11. Kennedy’s family and friends have created Team Kennedy, and they are looking forward to meeting more Duke Children’s supporters at Dance Dash 5K!

Money raised through programs like Dance Dash provided unrestricted funds for Duke Children’s. These funds support research, clinical care, advocacy and family support programs to help children and families heal both physically and emotionally.

The following are just a few areas where the dollars raised through programs like Dance Dash make a significant impact on the lives of sick children:

  • Make ’em Smile entertainer program to provide weekly visits to both the inpatient and clinic settings.
  • “Tell Me About My Operation” coloring book in English and Spanish and pocket reference books to help physicians translate medical terms to Spanish.
  • Parent support program for the Intensive and Transitional Care Nurseries, including library materials, and weekly parent education and support group meetings.

On behalf of the patients, families, and caregivers at Duke Children’s, we hope you will come out and boogie with us at Dance Dash 5K on Saturday, October 11 in downtown Durham!

For questions, please contact Keri Christianson at keri.christianson@duke.edu or 919-385-3140.


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