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Organizers expect walk to raise more than $40,000 for MS

April 12, 2004|by ANDREA ROWLAND

andrear@herald-mail.com

The 10th annual Washington County Multiple Sclerosis Walk will start at 9 a.m. Saturday, April 17, at Antietam National Battlefield in Sharpsburg. Participants can start checking in near the battlefield's Philadelphia Brigade Monument at 8 a.m. to begin the five-mile trek along historic Mansfield Avenue, Smoketown Road, Bloody Lane and Dunker Church Road.

More than 300 walkers participated in last year's event - which raised about $40,000 for the local and national chapters of the Multiple Sclerosis Society through pledges, walkers' donations and silent auction proceeds - and even more walkers are expected to raise more money this year for MS research and support programs, said event co-chairwoman Elaine Scrivener of Smithsburg.

She and Rodney Cline supervise a committee of about one dozen volunteers who began planning this year's fund-raiser last September.

Forty-one percent of funds raised will benefit local MS programs and 38 percent of proceeds will be used for MS research and national programs; remaining funds will benefit fund-raising efforts (13 percent), net reserve (5 percent) and administration (3 percent), according to information from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Maryland Chapter.

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Maryland MS chapters have raised more than $4.5 million for the cause since kick-starting the walks 16 years ago, Scrivener said.

Tom and Elaine Scrivener's daughter, Funkstown veterinarian Virginia Scrivener, organized the first Washington County-based MS Walk in 1994 to increase awareness about and raise research funds for the disease which struck her brother, Bill, three years earlier. The entire Scrivener clan plays an active role in the annual fund-raiser - from planning the event to registering walkers and walking themselves.

The local walk also will feature Civil War re-enactors and a silent auction featuring such goods as gift baskets, pottery, jewelry and local artwork. Outback Steakhouse will provide lunch for registered walkers.

Individuals can register for the walk online at www.nationalmssociety.org, by phone at 1-800-FIGHT-MS, or by fax at 1-410-527-9970. Advance registration is preferred so organizers can plan for food and beverages, but walkers also can register the morning of the event at the battlefield with a $25 minimum pledge.

Members of Boy Scout Troop 20 of Boonsboro will coordinate parking at the battlefield.

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