Registration now open for 2011 Union Hospital Run for HomeDOVER -- Registration is now open for the fourth annual Union Hospital Run for Home half-marathon road race and team relay on Sunday, April 17, 2011. The 2011 Run for Home will feature a half-marathon, three-person team relay, one-mile fun run, kids' race, and five-mile walk.In 2010, more than 1,100 people participated in the Union Hospital Run for Home events and helped raise more than $12,000 for the Tuscarawas Valley Habitat for Humanity. During the past year, the Run for Home Road Runners Club also supported the Fit Youth Initiative and sponsored a kids only road race. "In 2011 our goal is to reach 500 participants in the half-marathon and raise $15,000 for Habitat," said Run for Home Road Runners Club president Matt Ritzert. "We want to emphasize more than ever the importance to registering early for the 2011 race." Many recent half-marathons including the Stomp the Grapes event and races in Akron, Cleveland, and Columbus have sold out weeks before the event. In 2010, more than 360 people participated in the half-marathon. John Walter of Dover won the men's race with a time of 1 hour 21 minutes. Jessica Holder of Dover won the women's race, clocking a time of 1 hour 24 minutes. A record 110 teams competed in the three-person relay race."In addition to generating funds for Habitat, we want to continue to promote physical fitness and encourage people of all ages and fitness levels to participate," Ritzert added. This past April, more than 150 people participated in the fun run and about 240 people participated in the five-mile walk. "It's gratifying to see the Run for Home motivate so many people to participate in a healthy and beneficial physical activity," Ritzert added. Union Hospital is the lead sponsor for the Run for Home and will once again sponsor a series of training and fitness programs to help people get ready for the race. This year, the YMCA of Tuscarawas County and Super Fitness of New Philadelphia will team up to develop the training program that will consist of two five-week sessions. More details about the training program will be announced in the near future. "With the assistance of the YMCA and Super Fitness, we believe this will be the most practical and comprehensive training we've offered to date," explained Pam Dummermuth, Road Runners Club member and Union Hospital community health and wellness coordinator.The 2011 Run for Home will once again feature a corporate competition for the Charles Mackey Trophy. Any company that participates in the Run for Home as a sponsor is eligible for the award which is based entirely on participation. The company whose employees run the most miles in the Run for Home events will win the Charles Mackey Trophy which is named after an avid local runner who passed away after a battle with cancer. In 2010, Union Hospital captured the Charles Mackey award for the second consecutive year. More information about the Union Hospital Run for Home can be found at www.runforhome.org. The all new website includes a link to register on-line for all the Run for Home events. Website visitors can also download a paper registration form. The Run for Home is organized by the Run for Home Road Runners Club and is supported by hundreds of volunteers. Any individuals or groups interested in supporting the event can contact Ritzert at (330) 827-5710. "We cannot stage the Run for Home without the support of all the volunteers and organizations that help prepare for the race and keep everything running smoothly on race day," Ritzert said. "We are also thankful for the great cooperation from all the state, city, county, and township officials involved."In addition to Union Hospital, other sponsors for the 2011 race include Dover-Phila Federal Credit Union, Buehler's Fresh Foods, Parkway Nissan Lincoln Mercury, AultCare, Krugliak, Wilkins, Griffiths, and Dougherty Co. Attorneys at Law, Super Fitness, First Federal Community Bank, and John Picard Architect Inc. "We are continuing to line up sponsors for 2011. Any group or business interested in helping out can contact me at any time," said Ritzert.Tuscora Park will once again serve as the Run for Home headquarters. A health and fitness fair will be held in the park pavilion April 16 and 17. The half-marathon, a 13.1 mile road race through New Philadelphia and Dover, will step off at 1 p.m. on Sunday, April 17. The race also features a three-person team relay. The five-mile walk will begin at the same time as the half-marathon and team relay. The one-mile fun run/walk and kids' race will begin a short time later in the park area. The half-marathon is part of the Ohio Subway Challenge Series and the Allied Machine and Engineering Tuscarawas Valley Challenge. For information, contact Matt Ritzert at (330) 827-5710