Serving Metropolitan Detroit Since 1944

11th Annual Happy Soles 5K Run & Walk is a "virtual race"

proceeds support the Fish & Loaves Community Food Pantry

TAYLOR – Registration is under way for the 11th annual Happy Soles 5K Run and Walk,which is a virtual event this year in the wake of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic.

The 5K is a key supporting event for the Fish & Loaves Community Food Pantry, a faith-based, nonprofit, volunteer-operated, client-choice pantry based in Taylor. The pantry is committed to ensuring that no one goes hungry or without adequate nutrition in Taylor and six surrounding communities: Allen Park, Brownstown Township, Dearborn Heights, Romulus, Southgate and Woodhaven.

For the first time, participants can register and then run or walk the 5K race on their own and submit their times to earn medals.

"Due to the situation with COVID-19, the 2020 Happy Soles is now a virtual 5K run/walk," said Race Director Ellen Pfafflin. "The Fish & Loaves Community Food Pantry has stayed open during the entire time of the Michigan Stay at Home Order, providing food for our clients and emergency food to those experiencing food insecurity. We need your support now more than ever to continue to provide the needed groceries for our local families. Please join us in 'Taking Steps Against Hunger.'"

Typically, the start and finish of the 5K is at Taylor's Heritage Park. This year, there are options. Pfafflin, a longtime Fish & Loaves volunteer and board member, said a "virtual race is a race that can be run or walked from any location you choose."

"You can run, jog or walk on the road, on the trail, on the treadmill, at the gym or on the track – or even at another race," she said. "You get to run your own race, at your own pace, and time it yourself."

Registration continues through June 30 on the website The entry fee is $30, with a $5 discount for active military and first responders. The first 300 participants will receive a TEC T-shirt and a custom participation medal, which will be mailed starting July 1.

After running or walking the 5K – or 3.1 miles – each participant must post his or her time by June 30 on the website Organizers ask that participants post a photo with their time and an encouraging message on the Fish & Loaves Facebook page, using #HAPPYSOLES5K in the text.

Fish & Loaves officials thanked this year's sponsors, including Wayne Metro Community Action Agency, The Ford Fund, MASCO, DTE Energy Foundation, the City of Taylor, Real Estate One-Southgate, Taylor Chevrolet, Ron Dmitruchina, Manheim Detroit, Comcast, Load One, 2 42 Community Church Taylor and Beacon Baptist Church.

As always, donations of canned goods are accepted at the Fish & Loaves Community Food Pantry, located at 25670 Northline Road, Taylor.


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