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Legacy Run set for March 9

Participants cross the finish line at Sherwood's 2012 Legacy Run for Life. This year's run will be on March 9 and will benefit the Alpha Pregnancy Center.

Participants cross the finish line at Sherwood's 2012 Legacy Run for Life. This year's run will be on March 9 and will benefit the Alpha Pregnancy Center.

ALBANY, Ga. -- Now going into its third year, an annual running event held to raise funds for a community resource utilized by new or expectant mothers is now in the planning stages.

Legacy Run for Life, an event to benefit Sherwood Baptist Church's Alpha Pregnancy Center, is set to take place at Legacy Park, Sherwood's 82-acre sports park ministry, on March 9.

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Participants take off at the starting line at Sherwood's 2012 Legacy Run for Life. This year's run will be on March 9 and will benefit the Alpha Pregnancy Center.

"It's bringing in community awareness that the pregnancy center does exists," said Mike Johnston, executive director of the Sherwood Foundation. "There has been a lot of growth in client visits (at the center since the Legacy Run began)."

In 2010, a year before the Legacy Run came to fruition, the center had 286 visits. The number of visits continued to grow in 2011 and 2012, with tallies at 634 and 988 visits, respectively, Johnston said.

The growth in demand even has Sherwood in talks about expanding its services by partnering with a church in Terrell County to establish a Dawson branch, Johnston added.

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Toddlers race to the finish during the Toddler Trot at Sherwood's 2012 Legacy Run for Life. This year's run will be on March 9 and will benefit the Alpha Pregnancy Center.

Participation in the Legacy Run rose from 200 the first year to 400 the next, Johnston said, generating a total of $20,000 both years. The first year, some of the funds had to be used to pay off operational costs, but with more sponsors to help offset those costs, 100 percent of the proceeds are now benefiting the center, which serves as the crisis pregnancy and family counseling ministry of the church that is now in its 22nd year of operation.

Race events will include a 5K, a one-mile run/walk and a toddler trot. Along with the runs, there will be family activities and entertainment -- including bouncy houses and popcorn. The cost is currently $20 for the 5K and the one-mile run, a fee that will increase to $30 after Feb. 25.

The cost for the toddler trot, an event for children ages 6 years and younger, will remain at $15. The 5K race starts at 9:15 a.m., with the one-mile run/walk at 10 a.m. The toddler trot, roughly one-half of a lap in length, is at 10:30 a.m.

An awards ceremony will conclude the morning. All children participating in the toddler trot will get a medal. For the 5K, awards will be given for first, second and third place for overall male and female as well as the top males and females in their respective age groups.

The 5K race is utilizing chip timing as well as a Road Runners Club of America certified course. The event is a Georgia Grand Prix race and a Peachtree Road Race qualifying event, coordinators say.

Those who wish to pre-register online should do so by March 4 by going to www.sherwoodbaptistchurch.net/legacyrun or searching for the event on www.active.com. Registration forms are also available at Sherwood and can be mailed back to the church, Johnston said.

Late registration and packet pick-up for those who pre-registered will be held from 6 p.m.-8 p.m. at Sherwood's atrium on March 8 and at 8:45 a.m. on race day at Legacy Park.

Legacy Park is located at 2911 Leary Road. For more information, call (229) 883-1910.