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CONTACT: Brian Ososky
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March 13, 2015

Carillon Classic 5K Run/Walk Committee Sets Sights on Increasing Team Competition in Charity Event Set for Sat., May 2 at Bok Tower Gardens

LAKE WALES, Fla. – Runners can earn extra recognition and have lots of fun while they’re at it by competing in the 2015 Carillon Classic 5K Run & Walk on Saturday, May 2 at Bok Tower Gardens as a member of a team. The good news is that there’s no extra cost to become involved in the team competition.

The Carillon Classic registration fee before April 8 is $25 for adults and $15 for students and includes a guarantee of a Carillon Classic 5K dri-fit style t-shirt and the option to be involved in the team competition. After April 8, the fee increases by $5 and the t-shirt cannot be guaranteed. Runners who wish to join a team can do so upon registration. The deadline for team registration also is April 8.

According to Janel Vasallo, who is in charge of team recruitment, signing up for the team competition is “easy.” When registering at, the team leader creates a team as part of his or her registration and names it. Other runners can search for their team’s name and join it during the registration process.

“The team competition proved very popular when we introduced it for the first time at last year’s Carillon Classic and we expect the momentum to continue this year. We have established a goal of having at least 10 or more teams competing this year,” Vasallo said.

All teams must have a minimum of four and no more than six members and include at least one woman or a runner of either gender over the age of 50. Team awards and rankings will be determined by adding up the combined times of the top four runners on each team. Trophies will be awarded to the top three teams. The “most creative” team will receive a “Judge’s Choice” award regardless of how long its top four members take to navigate the challenging course.

Now in its fourth year, the Carillon Classic 5K is a charitable event sponsored by the Dick Pope/Polk County Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA) in partnership with Bok Tower Gardens, Youth and Family Alternatives (YFA), Inc. and corporate sponsors to raise funds for YFA’s George W. Harris, Jr. Runaway and Youth Crisis Shelter in Bartow and the FPRA chapter’s educational and professional programs. The first three Carillon Classic 5K’s attracted a combined total of nearly 1,100 runners and walkers, raising more than $11,000 for charity.

Due to a $12 million capital improvement project now underway at Bok Tower Gardens, the 5K course will be altered this year, with details on the new course configuration to be announced soon, according to committee Chair Marybeth Soderstrom.

Soderstrom added that the course will continue to be extra challenging for runners and walkers alike, with elevation changes and a variety of terrains, including mulch trails, gravel paths and paved roads. Participants will hear soothing carillon music and see beautiful gardens, citrus groves and native Florida fauna as they run atop “Iron Mountain,” one of the highest points on the Florida peninsula.

For more details on the Carillon Classic 5K, including registration forms for individual and team competition, go to Runners and walkers can also register on race day starting at 6:30 am, with the race starting at 7:30 am rain or shine.

Information on the many levels of sponsorship available to potential corporate sponsors – Title, Presenting, Elite, Champion, Sprint and Shelter Supporter – can be obtained from Soderstrom by calling 863-838-9762 (cell) or sending an e-mail to Corporate sponsors can make payments on PayPal at

Regular updates on the 2015 Carillon Classic 5K Run & Walk are available by visiting the event page on Facebook at

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