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home > races/results > usa: massachusetts > 5k4life – new race, vital and venerable cause

5K4LIFE – New Race, Vital and Venerable Cause
This event is all heart, just like the legendary “Iron Horse”. You won’t want to miss this opportunity to step up to a terrific race challenge in Cambridge, Massachusetts that only a team effort and a wonderful cause can deliver.

5K4LIFE – New Race, Vital and Venerable Cause


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By Skip Cleaver
Posted Sunday, 27 September, 2009

This one-of-a-kind event will take place on Sunday, October 25, 2009 on the flat, fast, intriguing streets of Cambridge, Massachusetts. What a great way to combine your personal fitness goals while running to benefit the Prize4Life Organization, raising money to accelerate the discovery of treatments and a cure of ALS/Lou Gehrig’s Disease! What a terrifically interesting parallel—the connection between the challenge of running or walking this course with the challenges faced every day by individuals and families dealing with ALS, for which there is no known cure—not yet. That is why they run the race! This race, the race to find a cure for ALS, is a race we all must win.

Lou Gehrig was known as the “Iron Horse” and had a 2,130-game streak of consecutive games played; and until just recently he was the all-time hits leader for the New York Yankees, a record that stood for more than 70 years. Despite his legendary strength and stamina, Gehrig died of the disease that now bears his name at age 37, less than two years after his exemplary athletic career ended. If it can happen to Lou Gehrig, it can happen to anyone. Each and every runner and walker in the 5K4Life should be truly thankful that they can enjoy the sport and this 5K challenge offered.

Prize4Life President, James Giessler, says, “This event has great potential to bring a diverse group of people together to help us realize a world without ALS—a world in which ALS does not keep anyone from running all the races they want!”

Join the excitement of this special inaugural event to raise money and help to finally find a cure for ALS. If you are looking for a running or walking challenge, one that will define your personal best, along with the chance to make the world a better place—this 5K4Life is one race not to be missed.

The Course
This will be a very flat and enjoyable tour through the city streets of Cambridge, Massachusetts. There are very few turns on this course, with much of it straight down Broadway and returning via Harvard Street. It starts and ends in Cambridge Center near the intersection of Galileo Galilei Way and Binney Street. There is a map of the course through historic Cambridge on the Website,, so please check it out.

Awards and Amenities
This race has a convenient 11:00 a.m. start. There will be very attractive custom-made and uniquely-designed medals given to all finishers as they cross the finish line. There will also be awards for the top three finishers in each 10-year Age Group, with unique trophies going to the top three overall females and males.

And there will be special prizes for top individual fundraisers as well as teams (see below).

This race will be timed by Yankee Timing using the D-tag technology which insures accurate and immediate results for all comers—the first, last and all in between. Yankee Timing will also be providing a start and finish mat so that runners will get both a gun and net time. There will be traffic control, accurate mile markers, water stops along the course, plenty of volunteers, and food and beverages at the finish. Sign up now, because the first 750 will get T-shirts (always great to get a shirt from an inaugural race—they tend to become collectors’ items).

Team Challenges, Remote Virtual Runners, and Other Opportunities
Any group, friends, clubs, co-workers, or relatives, can participate as a team. Prizes will be given to the largest team, as well as the team raising the most money for ALS. Members of the “Patients Like Me” community who form teams can receive great support, team buttons, special T-shirts, and a sense of the greater good (more information on the ”Patients Like Me” forum on their website).

The race also features the innovative “Biotech Challenge”, which will include teams from pharmaceutical or biotechnology companies. These teams will be judged separately and there will also prizes in this category for the largest team and the team raising the most money for ALS.

Remote Runners who are unable to attend the inaugural event in Cambridge, but who want to support the ALS cause, can run remotely. That is, anyone can run a 5K of their choice and still be counted for the 5K4Life; all they have to do is register as a Remote Runner (check it on the Website). As such you can receive the wonderful medal and T-shirt (both will be mailed), and participate/contribute from anywhere in the USA. You can run any race.

Prize4Life was established as a results oriented 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization whose sole purpose is to accelerate research in pursuit of treatments and a cure for ALS. The organization works in novel ways to find effective treatments and a cure for ALS by offering incentive prizes for significant research breakthroughs.. One hundred percent of the race registration fees will go to the organization and its programs. Your participation can help make this important fundraising event a huge success. As Prize4Life points out, the next ALS break-though could affect your family or friends.

Prize4Life enlists new ideas, new people, and new approaches. The goal is to attack this disease in part by offering tremendous financial incentives to spur competition for innovation and meaningfully effective research in dealing with ALS.

Prize4Life uses powerful incentives to focus the energy of distributed innovation and crowd-sourcing on the most pressing challenges faced in finding treatments and a cure for ALS. Prize4Life does not award grants, choosing instead to reward researchers for results that move the field forward.

Prize4Life Founder Avi Kremer says, " Prize4Life was founded in 2006 by me and two other Harvard Business School classmates to cure ALS. It's as simple as that. Before starting Prize4Life, we spent over a thousand hours looking at the big picture and identifying the gaps that prevent us from getting a cure. The goal of Prize4Life is to go out of business ASAP."

Research has shown that oftentimes solutions to complex problems come from unrelated fields. Prize4Life believes that it is essential to attract new minds and new ideas to ALS research, to complement existing efforts already underway. Rather than concentrating research efforts in a few labs, Prize4Life seeks to engage hundreds of labs from all over the world in achieving the breakthroughs needed.

In addition, Prize4Life is helping to build important ALS research infrastructure components to support both the established ALS research community and emerging ALS researchers. The 2009 launch of the ALS Forum portal at is just one example of the infrastructure support Prize4Life is supporting.

For more information on Prize4Life, visit

Register Now
These potential life-saving research accomplishments can be your inspiration to meet your fitness goals. This is the perfect time to take a running tour of historic, fabled Cambridge, whether you are dedicated to this cause or just trying to stay in great running shape. You can discover your personal best as a veteran runner, or attempt to run or walk a 5K for the first time, a distance that you perhaps didn’t think possible. Running to help others or running for such a great cause adds something extra to the experience and will bolster your enthusiasm from now through race day. Running is, after all, relatively easy for you; think of the challenges faced by those suffering from ALS.

The first 750 to register will get a great T-shirt. So act now! Please visit the race website at: to register on line and to get more race details. Enjoy preparing for this unique event, join the race, and join the cause!



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