ROXANA - Katlyn Herndon, a nursing student and Roxana High School graduate, has always had a passion for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn.

It started when Herndon was 7 years old and she did a math-athon at her elementary school for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. When she was 10 she visited the hospital personally and she said it was an “eye-opening experience.”

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She has decided to have a Neon Night Challenge fund-raiser for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital that is very unique in Downtown Alton. The event is set for 9 p.m. Aug. 3 at Riverfront Park, next to the Liberty Bank Amphitheater. The event will be a one-mile run/walk for those interested in participating.

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“This is a fund-raiser for St. Jude’s Children's Research Hospital, which helps kids diagnosed with different forms of cancer,” Herndon said “Since opening, St. Jude’s has helped families free of charge, thanks to charitable donations. Every year since I was seven years old, I have found a new way to donate to this amazing charity to help make an impact on the lives of families experiencing this disease so that the people at St. Jude’s can continue to help those in need and provide the best medical care to the children/families who need it.”

There will be a donation box at the event and the donation to participate is $10 per person. She said checks could be mailed to 604 Condit Ave., Alton, or contact her at (618) 670-3709. Pre-registration is due by July 31, but entries will be accepted that night, Herndon said.

“We recommend people who participate to wear red,” Herndon said. “That is the big color on St. Jude’s logo. My mom and I bought bracelets and necklaces people can wear so it will seem like we are lighting up the night. This means a lot to me and I am hoping for a really good turnout. This is my first year and I am hoping to get my foot in the water and just keep it going. I want the fund-raiser to get bigger and bigger every year.”

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