Hunger gets scared away in Rochester

Hunger gets scared away in Rochester

Ambika Vohra

The Rochester Neighborhood House annually hosts a Scare Away Hunger 5K run or walk. This event brings hundreds of people from the Rochester community into a small town square area in order to raise money to feed the families going hungry in the Rochester area.

This past Saturday, the annual run took place in Downtown Rochester. Radio stations such as 98.7 set up tents, as well as face painting, sack races, and pumpkin rolling for the children.

Despite the frigid temperatures, there was a turnout of about 300 runners. RARA students also performed for the runners. Mrs. Linda Riggs is one of the head coordinators for these events.

“Although we had about 100 less people come this year, I was pleased with the turnout,” Mrs. Riggs said. “After all, it is surprising that so many people came out this morning even though it is so cold and slightly raining. I can barely feel my fingers.”

Not only this, next to the run was a widespread farmers’ market with fresh jam, fruits, and vegetables available. Volunteers were also promoting a new organization, Raising Rochester, which sells fresh produce. The proceeds go directly to aid the Food Pantry.

“I love the Farmer’s Market,” Mrs. Riggs said. “It really adds to the atmosphere of the run, and the pumpkins all around are very fascinating.”

According to Mrs. Riggs, the runners are demographically diverse, ranging from an average age of 5 to 50. This year, the path of the run wound all around the Downtown Rochester area, and some of the path bordered the Clinton River trail.

“Last year, the run took place in the Rochester park,” volunteer Neha Tiwari said, “so I am glad that they changed it up a bit. The Clinton River trail is more scenic.”

With all the volunteers and congregating runners, the community united for a common cause. The solemnity of the cause combined with the festivities of October created a bittersweet feel.

“It’s hard to believe people are starving among us,” Mrs. Riggs said. “But it happens, and we need to help.”