The City of Perris’ annual health fair in April promises triple the action, triple the excitement and triple the fun.
That’s because this year’s health fair on April 25 not only features the City of Perris but also the American Cancer Society Relay for Life and the Perris Elementary School District‘s Annual Fun Run. Perris officials say the trifecta could draw as many as 5,000 people to the City Hall Campus, making it one of the biggest events in recent history.
“We are looking forward to April 25—we think it’s going to be a red-letter day for Perris,” said Mayor Daryl Busch.
The day’s events begin at 8 a.m. with a “Tot Trot” for tykes that precedes the Fun Run. At 8:30 a.m. the 5-kilometer (3.1-mile) Fun Run begins, taking off from near City Hall and winds through Downtown Perris before returning to the campus. Top runners finish the course in little more than 15 minutes but plenty of other participants—families, infants, children and pets—take the event much more slowly. The Fun Run typically draws more than 1,200 participants.
The Relay for Life begins at 9 a.m. with opening ceremonies and a “survivor’s lap” around Foss Field Park.
The City’s health fair opens at 10 a.m. and features numerous health screenings, including those for diabetes, high-blood pressure, body mass index as well as information about dental hygiene and mental health issues. The health fair, which last year drew nearly 2,000 residents, continues the City’s Live Well Perris healthy-eating active-living campaign.
“We are pleased the Fun Run and Relay for Life will be joining us for our Live Well program,” he said. “It’s going to be a wonderful event for everybody.”
Dozens of vendors will be on campus, including several medical providers, food vendors and representatives from gymnasiums and exercise groups. Healthy food demonstrations will take place. There will be a rock wall and kid’s corner to entertain youngsters. Radio Lazer will broadcast live from the health fair. Raffle prizes will be awarded.
Mayor Pro-Tem Tonya Burke said she is delighted to partner with the elementary school district and American Cancer Society on this year’s health fair.
“The health fair is a big deal because peoples’ health is a big deal,” she said. “I am so glad the City has been so receptive in organizing and encouraging residents to take part in its Live Well campaign. That shows there is a great interest and a great need for such a program.”
Burke said it makes sense to partner with the school district, which serves thousands of children interested in learning how to eat and exercise properly, and with the cancer society, where patient success often depends on remaining physical active and making wise nutrition choices.
“It’s never too late, it’s never too early to learn how to improve your health,” Burke said. “You’re never too young and you’re never too old.”
Perris City Councilman Julio Rodriguez has supported Live Well since its inception in 2013. He said he is pleased to once again work with the American Cancer Society and to forge the new relationship with the elementary school district.
“The success of Live Well is unbelievable and our community is the reason for it,” he said. “As we grow the program it is great to be able to partner with the Perris Elementary School District.”
Councilman David Rabb said hosting three activities one the same day will benefit the City, the school district and the American Cancer Society.
“It will make for beautiful synergy,” Rabb said. “People can go to our campus and learn all sorts of things to improve their health—from screenings to losing weight to eating healthy, exercising and fighting cancer. I am delighted everything will be on one day at one location.”
Leslie Frankum-Bryan, who teaches third grade at Palms Elementary School, said she is “really excited to partner with the City.”
“We think it will make our event by drawing more support from Perris,” she said.
Frankum-Byran said the Fun Run raises money for scholarship and other campus-related needs. Information about the 6th annual Fun Run is available on the City of Perris website, www.cityofperris.org or participants can register at the Perris Elementary District Office at 143 East First Street or by contacting Trina Luera at 657-3118 Ext. 4013.
Three-time cancer survivor Bob McGinty is heading up the Relay for Life this year, which begins at 9 a.m. with opening ceremonies and a first lap around Foss Field Park led by survivors.
He called the City’s support for the Relay for Life “second to none.”
“This partnership is phenomenal,” he said. “The City of Perris has always been a huge supporter of the American Cancer Society. Not only do they provide a place to hold it, they advertise the event and the City even sponsors a team to take part. The City of Perris gives us everything.”
McGinty survived a battle with prostate cancer and two recurrences of skin cancer. He is a tireless advocate for cancer research and treatment. He spoke March 7 at the opening night at the Perris Auto Speedway, where promoter Don Kazarian has raised more than $100,000 in the last nine years.
Kazarian also will attend the April 25 event. He said he considers fundraising to beat cancer the most important civic activity in the 20 years he has promoted the speedway.