New fun run for women

By RENEE FRANCOEUR Advocate Staff A new run, sponsored by Only Women’s Fitness, is coming to Red Deer in May.

Suzanne Koopmans

Suzanne Koopmans


Advocate Staff

A new run, sponsored by Only Women’s Fitness, is coming to Red Deer in May.

The Only Women’s Fitness Fun Run, also called the Mother’s Day Run, is the first of its kind for Red Deer, said Val Jensen, event director for the run and a triathlon organizer for the past 20 years. It was announced on Thursday, coinciding with International Women’s Day.

“Calgary and Edmonton, between the two of them, get about 22,000 runners for their Mother’s Day runs,” said Jensen. She felt the need for a similar event here.

“What’s a better and healthier way to praise women and mothers than with an energetic, feel-good fitness challenge?” The event is only open to females.

Starting at 9 a.m. on May 13 from Parkland Mall, the run seeks to celebrate and empower women of all ages. A portion of funds raised will go to Family Services of Central Alberta.

“We’re so excited about the run,” said Valdene Callin, manager of community relations at Family Services. “We’re looking to get as many women involved as possible, from those in wheelchairs to expecting mothers.”

There will be five-km, three-km, and one-km runs, as well as a 100-metre “diaper dash” and a 500-metre “little ladies race.”

For the three-km and five-km runs, youth (aged five to 12) can register for $20, teens (13 to 18) for $30, and adults for $35. A complimentary T-shirt is included. The fee for the one-km run is $10 and the children’s races are free. Registration fees go up $5 after April 1.

Also on May 13, Parkland Mall will feature a Mother’s Day wellness fair sponsored by Red Deer’s Pure Chiropractic.

“Val is a force to be reckoned with,” said Dan Hachey, general manager at Parkland Mall.

“When she approached us about this idea last fall, we loved it and wanted to make sure we were supporting her.”

Prizes will be drawn over the course of the day, participants will receive their own “swag bag,” and Jensen plans to have flowers handed out to the first 500 women to cross the finish line.

Jensen and Callin’s goal is to have about 1,000 women come out to walk or run on Mother’s Day.

“Really, it’s just about women coming together and supporting each other,” said Callin.

For more information and to register, visit or email Jensen at