BETHALTO — An ice cream run has never felt this good.
Kelley Gerber and her husband, Chad, owners of the Bethalto Dairy Queen store, are organizing the first-ever DQ Dash 5K and Family Fun Run to benefit the Children’s Miracle Network of Greater St. Louis. The run and walk will be at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 17, stepping off from Bethalto’s Sports Complex.
Two St. Louis hospitals, St. Louis Children’s Hospital and SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital, are part of the Children’s Miracle Network. Kelley Gerber said the 5K is a way to benefit the network, which helps with patient programs, purchase of pediatric equipment and critical hospital renovations, while ensuring the biggest beneficiaries are the hospitals and the children they serve.
“Dairy Queen as a whole does a lot for Children’s Miracle Network,” Gerber said. “That is one of their big (causes). I wanted to do something to help with that but to stay in our community. So, we are actually doing it with the Children’s Miracle Network of Greater St. Louis. It’s just going to be the two hospitals, St. Louis Children’s Hospital and Cardinal Glennon, so all the proceeds will go back to those two hospitals.
“Together, these hospitals provide over 475,000 treatment visits a year,” she said. “We feel like this is an very important cause to help the children, who are the future.”
While it’s the first of its kind, the run isn’t the only way the Bethalto store gives back. Gerber, who has only been owner of the Bethalto location since last October, said the store has been involved with other events, like Toys for Tots and Fire Truck O’Toys, in recent years to benefit local youths as well.
“We try to help out within the community quite a bit,” Gerber said.
Gerber, who has lived in the area for nearly 20 years — Chad Gerber is a 1989 graduate of Civic Memorial High School in Bethalto — said she doesn’t have any fundraising or participation expectations for the event, only that it raises money for the network.
Registration will start at 7:30 a.m. the day of the event, and Kelley Gerber said racers can register at Bethalto’s Dairy Queen, 444 W. Bethalto Drive, or online. Registration before Sept. 1 is $25 for adults and $15 for children 10 and younger, and comes with a T-shirt. Registration the day of the event is $30.
To register online, visit ht.ly/Ud2K303vF90.