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High heels race raises funds for March of Dimes

FARGO- If a 30-meter dash sounds easy, consider hobbling through the race in high heels. For March of Dimes North Dakota Chapter's first annual High Heels for High Hopes race Saturday at the Scheels Arena, 11 runners, both men and women, sprinted...

High Heels for High Hopes race
The men's team of high-heeled runners dashes for the finish line Saturday during March of Dimes North Dakota Chapter's High Heels for High Hopes race outside Scheels Arena in Fargo. Photo by Maureen McMullen / The Forum

FARGO- If a 30-meter dash sounds easy, consider hobbling through the race in high heels.

For March of Dimes North Dakota Chapter's first annual High Heels for High Hopes race Saturday at the Scheels Arena, 11 runners, both men and women, sprinted and sauntered up to the finish line in stilettos three inches and taller.

"A lot of organizations have walks, and we just wanted to shake ours up and do it a little different," said March of Dimes State Director Karin Roseland. "So, we thought, what's a fun way to get people involved, make a difference and add a little bit of entertainment?"

Despite the risk of rolling an ankle, Matt Zimmerman, Assistant General Manager at Courtyard by Marriott, said he was happy to don high heels- along with a tutu and blue wig- to raise money for March of Dimes.

"If wearing six-inch stilettos is going to help, I'll take one for the team," said Zimmerman.

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"I've been practicing at least enough to be able to not fall flat on my face. I'm going to stick to my toes, probably, the balls of my feet, and I'm going to try to stay off my heels."

The high heel dash followed the March for Babies, an annual walk to benefit March of Dimes North Dakota Chapter.

Through events like March for Babies, March of Dimes is able to support the health of babies by funding research, vaccines and medical breakthroughs.

"(March of Dimes has) been with us through everything," said Melissa Hoffman, whose son, Elijah, 5 months, was born with a rare lung condition that hindered his production of surfactants, which help the lungs absorb air.

"This is why we can smile for having a preemie, for situations like this," Hoffman said of March for Babies. "We get to talk about his prematurity story, and how wonderful the hospital was to us, and what a blessing he's been to us, and we just look forward to his life that we get to share with everyone."

Readers can reach Forum Reporter Maureen McMullen at (701) 235-7311

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