Walk don’t run for multiple sclerosis

Chantel Sellers, General Reporter

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A little bit of rain over the weekend did not stop people from supporting a good cause. The Walk for Multiple Sclerosis was held on Saturday April 30 in Platteville.

For six years in a row, Platteville has hosted a Walk for Multiple Sclerosis, as well as a fundraiser to raise awareness for multiple sclerosis.

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society does yearly walks in support of multiple sclerosis awareness. Learning specialist for student support services Priscilla Hahn said that these walks take place all over Wisconsin during the months of April and May.

According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society website, nationalmssociety.org, multiple sclerosis is an “unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body.” The website also states that multiple sclerosis is “thought to affect more than 2.3 million people worldwide.”

Hahn said the participants were given the option of either walking one or three miles around Platteville.

“We do this event with the hope to improve the quality of life for people effected by multiple sclerosis, as well as [to] raise money for things like research and education,” planning team member Ashley Wissinger said.

Wissinger said a planning committee puts everything together in preparation for the event. She also said they had approximately 250 people participating in the walk as well as 50 volunteers.

Wissinger said that there is no registration fee to sign-up for the event, in order to encourage people to go out and raise funds. She also said that any individuals that raise $125 or more receive a free T-shirt.

“We use this as an incentive to get as many people out there in hopes of raising as much money as possible to support this cause,” Wissinger said.

Last year the National Multiple Sclerosis Society raised a little over $18,000 from the Platteville walk, Wissinger said. This year they had set a goal of $20,000.

Wissinger said there are many aspects beyond the walk that take place during the actual event. There was an “I live with MS” table in which individuals living with multiple sclerosis or are close with someone who MS can receive a “goodie” bag and T-shirt. She also said they provide a continental breakfast table as well as an advocacy table to gain public support. The event also had a silent auction and raffle in order to raise more money. Pioneer Pete was in attendance as well to keep everyone excited and motivated.

“It’s very inspiring to see people come out to support their friends and family. When more people get involved it’s a more enjoyable experience to share with them,” team member Pat Randolph said.

“Doing the MS walk and helping out is a lot of fun. When you do it long enough, you start to recognize people. It’s just like a big family experience,” volunteer Trina Springsteen said.