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Home » » C-GCC Hosting Walk to End Alzheimers October 16th

C-GCC Hosting Walk to End Alzheimers October 16th

Written By Editor on 10/10/21 | 10/10/21

The Alzheimer’s Association, Northeastern New York chapter is hosting its 2021 Walk to End Alzheimer’s – Columbia Greene on Saturday, Oct. 16 at Columbia-Greene Community College. Participants may check in beginning at 8 a.m. with an opening ceremony at 9 a.m. The walk starts at 9:30 a.m.
On Walk Day, participants honor those affected by Alzheimer’s with a poignant Promise Garden Ceremony – a mission-focused experience that signifies our solidarity in the fight against the disease. The colors of the Promise Garden flowers represent people’s connection to Alzheimer’s – their personal reasons to end the disease.
“We are so excited to be back in person this fall, so we can bring together the individuals, families and companies who make Walk to End Alzheimer’s possible,” said Alzheimer’s Association, Northeastern New York Walk Manager Joseph Heaney. “Our committee and staff are working hard to create an experience that is meaningful, inspiring and safe for all individuals to participate.” 
More than 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease, including 410,000 New Yorkers. It’s not only a leading cause of death in the U.S., more than 11 million family members and friends provide care to people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias.
Walk to End Alzheimer’s is the world’s largest event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support and research. The goal for this year’s Columbia Greene walk is to raise $27,000.
Plans are currently moving forward to host the Columbia Greene walk in person. The health and safety of participants, staff and volunteers remain the top priorities as decisions are made about event details. The Columbia Greene Walk will implement safety protocols including physical distancing, masks (where required), contactless registration, hand sanitizing stations and more. Options will be offered to participate online and in local neighborhoods.
To register as an individual walker or team captain and to receive the latest updates, visit

As Walk Manager Joe Heaney told us, "We like to affectionately call the Walk to End Alzheimer's "the world's largest support group," as it brings together so many families impacted by this disease. Currently, in the United States, more than 6 million people, including 410,000 New Yorkers, are living with Alzheimer's and over 11 million individuals are serving as unpaid caregivers. As the prevalence of this disease continues to grow, the cost of care is escalating into the hundreds of billions. Alzheimer's is devastating our families, our finances and our future and it's time to end it. The money we raise at Walk helps the Alzheimer's Association lead the way to end Alzheimer's and all other dementia by accelerating global research, driving risk reduction and early detection, and maximizing quality care and support. So far, we've raised nearly $20,000 and are moving closer to our goal of $27,000.

Perhaps what is most moving about our walk is our Promise Garden Ceremony. Our Walk is full of flowers, each one representing our connection to Alzheimer's - our reason to end this disease. For example, yellow represents those who are caring for a loved one with dementia, like Rebecca Gordon, who was our yellow flower holder last year. Rebecca moved from the west coast with her dog, Sweet Jane, when she suspected her dad had Alzheimer's. She has found solace in attending our support groups. Purple flowers represent those who have lost a loved one to Alzheimer's, like Marlene Merchant, who lost her mom, Josephine Barkman, last year. Marlene is grateful for the Walk to End Alzheimer's to help bring awareness to this disease and provide families with support. During the ceremony, we ask participants to hold their flowers high and I can tell you that looking out and seeing a crowd of flowers is extremely emotional. It shows that this is not just an individual disease, or even a family disease, this is a community disease and we all must come together to help end it.

We are taking many precautions at our event, as we take the health and safety of our staff, volunteers, and participants very seriously. We will encourage participants to maintain a physical distance of six feet wherever possible and will have several hand-sanitizing stations. In addition, we will have purple masks available at our registration table. However, should someone want to participate in our walk but not feel comfortable doing so in a large group, there is the option to walk from home in your own neighborhood."

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