Particpants pose for a picture with the event's mascot 'Miles' at Saturday's 5K Run in Upper Alton. ALTON - Simmons Hanly Conroy and Metro Tri Club of Edwardsville once again teamed up to put on the 14th Annual Alton Miles for Meso 5K Run and 3K Fun Run/Walk in honor of National Mesothelioma Awareness Day which is Monday, September 26th.

People have been looking forward to this event for a couple of years now. Todd Adamitis, an organizer of the event said that the races had more than 1,000 people registered.

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He remembers the days when they had less than 50 participants.

The long-running event produced a large crowd Saturday morning in Upper Alton with the race’s start/finish line being right outside of Marquette Catholic High School’s front doors.

For 12 years the event has always been in-person, however, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this was the first face-to-face run in three years. In 2020 and 2021 the race was put on in a virtual capacity.

“Both virtual runs had 1,000 people registered,” Adamitis said. “Because of that virtual race, it has really spawned off across the country. People are walking all over the world now really.”

The race began shortly after 9 a.m. on a beautiful fall morning with temperatures in the high 60s to low 70s. Hundreds of people young and old participated in the event, one that is for a great cause.

Since the race’s inception, it has raised more than $468,00 in funds to support mesothelioma research and awareness, a number that only grew larger after this year’s race.

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Adamitis said that “we can’t do it without our sponsors.”

Through the help of those sponsors, this event raises a ton of money.

“We always try to find a charity that supports mesothelioma victims and their families,” he said.

This year it’s Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO), founded in 2004 to give asbestos victims and concerned citizens a united voice, raise public awareness about the dangers of asbestos exposure and work toward a global asbestos ban.

The 2021 Alton race raised $38,000 for ADAO.

With this year being a huge success, eyes are already focused on next year. Adamitis says that the organizers will have their first meeting for 2023’s run next week. It takes almost an entire year of planning to put these large events together and operate smoothly.

All is done so for a great cause and their hard work certainly paid off for the race’s first in-person event in three years.

More like this:

Oct 6, 2022 | $40,000 Raised For Mesothelioma Awareness At The 14th Annual Alton Miles For Meso Run/Walk

Sep 24, 2020 | Nearly 1,000 People Expected to Participate in Virtual Alton Miles for Meso Race This Weekend

Sep 7, 2016 | 8th Annual Alton Miles for Meso race dedicated to helping prevent asbestos-related diseases

Aug 10, 2017 | Registration now open for 9th annual Miles for Meso 5K

Aug 3, 2018 | Registration now open for 10th Annual Miles for Meso 5K