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It'll Soon Be Time For 8K

It's almost September, and that means it'll soon be time for the 17th annual 8K Race and 2K Fun Run/Walk. This year's event will be held Sunday, Sept. 7, at 8:30 a.m., in Fair Lakes.

Peterson Cos. is the main sponsor, and proceeds go to the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP). Last year's race raised $50,000, and 100 people signed up for the bone-marrow registry program.

Money from the race enables people to be tested for free so they may be entered into the registry. To date, the Fair Lakes 8K has raised more than $300,000 in donations to the NMDP and added nearly 2,000 people to its registry.

As always, the race will be held, rain or shine, and the course is USATF-certified. It begins and ends at 12500 Fair Lakes Circle — between the Fairfax County and Fair Lakes parkways — in Fairfax. The fun/run walk kicks off 10 minutes after the 8K, at 8:40 a.m.

Registration is $20 before Sept. 1 and $25 afterward; children 12 and under are $10, and the race fee is tax-deductible. Register online at www.racepacket.com or www.active.com, or call 703-631-7571. For more information, see ssutphin@petersoncos.com or www.fairlakes.com.

THE AWARDS CEREMONY will begin at 9:45 a.m., and prizes will be awarded to the top finishers in the male and female, wheelchair and children's divisions. The fastest male and female will each receive $100, a trophy and a merchandise prize; second- and third-place males and females will win $50 and $25, respectively, plus merchandise prizes.

Awards will also be given to the winners of various age divisions. A trophy and prize will be given to the top team, as well. Five to 10 people may comprise a team; each team must be co-ed, and team members should send in their entry forms together.

Each registered participant will receive a free T-shirt. There'll also be a post-race buffet, a DJ from Classic Rock station 94.7 FM, door prizes and more.

* Registration and packet pickup will be Saturday, Sept. 6, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m., in the main lobby of the Hyatt Fair Lakes at 12777 Fair Lakes Circle (call 703-818-1234) or Sunday, Sept. 7, between 7 and 8 a.m., at the finish-line area at 12500 Fair Lakes Circle.

* Testing for the bone-marrow donor program is also Sept. 6, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m., at the Hyatt Fair Lakes, and Sept. 7, from 8 a.m.-10 a.m., at 12500 Fair Lakes Circle. Anyone screened on those two days will receive a raffle ticket for a door prize. Testing will also be done Friday, Sept. 5, from 11 a.m.-3 p.m., at 12500 Fair Lakes Circle.

Almost 70 percent of patients needing a bone-marrow transplant cannot find donors within their families. Their chance of finding an unrelated donor is from 1 in 100 to 1 in 1 million. But the odds of finding an unrelated donor increase with every person who joins the NMDP registry. For more information about the NMDP, call 1-800-MARROW-2 or visit www.marrow.org.