Walking the walk for MS | PostIndependent.com

Walking the walk for MS

John Gardner
Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” Scary packages often hide hidden treasures. At least that is what Old Snowmass resident Jen Rupert believes.

Rupert was diagnosed two years ago with multiple sclerosis at the age of 35. While she admits that the diagnosis was scary, she said that through events like the annual MS Lifeline Walk for Multiple Sclerosis, the community support has been overwhelming. And living with the disease is not that scary anymore.

“It’s just amazing, all the people that come out,” Rupert said. “And everyone is out there to support MS.”

Carbondale resident Scott Bowie won’t be walking in the 2009 MS Lifeline Walk for Multiple Sclerosis. It’s the first year in several years that he won’t participate in the event.

But he knows that there will still be a good turnout this year. He’s seen it grow in the 12 years since his diagnosis.

“It’s gotten much more popular over the years,” Bowie said.

And while Bowie may not be in town this year, organizers expect between 300 and 400 people to be out Saturday walking for the cause.

“The numbers of registered walkers are up for the first four months of the year, but they’ve kind of leveled off since then,” said event organizer Tricia Pallatt. “But we are confident that people are still interested in this.”

Last year’s event had 26 registered teams with close to 400 people as well.

Pallatt said that she’s already had 200 people sign up and that oftentimes a lot of people sign up the day of the event.

This year, she’s heard from a lot of first-timers that will be walking.

“We have a lot of first-time walkers this year,” Pallatt said. “And people who are interested because they have people in their lives that have recently been affected by the disease.”

People like Rupert. She participated in the walk for the first time last year and had such a good time that there was no way she was going to miss out this year.

“As I was walking last year, what was cool for me was meeting a lot of people in the community that are involved and who are affected by the disease,” Rupert said.

“It was really cool to develop a network in the community of people that are affected,” she said. “It’s a great event and it’s a beautiful walk.”

The walk will begin at 9 a.m. and will follow the normal route starting at the No Name Rest Area following the Glenwood Canyon Bike Path to the Grizzly Creek Rest Area.

There is also a 5K run that begins at 8 a.m. with registration at 7 a.m.

Rupert expects it to be just as fun as last year. And veterans like Bowie agree.

“It’s a great event and an opportunity for the MS Society to raise some money and hopefully bring us a cure at some point,” Bowie said.

“I think the most important thing is that the disease is scary but, it is often in life we find a hidden treasure inside a scary package,” Rupert said. “Through the strong network and the therapy, and these events, I’ve seen the hidden treasure in this scary package.”

Contact John Gardner: 384-9114


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