Supporting Our Furry Friends
Leigh Ann Ray has always loved animals, and since 2013, she’s been the race director for the Annual Cause for Paws race. “When we started, we just wanted to do something to help Save Our Strays,” she says. “Animal rescue is much needed in our community, and it’s not cheap.” The first ever Cause for Paws race was a success, and through the years, it’s become more and more successful.
Cause for Paws is presented by the Tug Valley Road Runners Club, and participants have a choice between a 5K and a 1 mile walk. Proceeds benefit Save Our Strays (SOS) which is an animal rescue and no-kill shelter that has served Mingo County for years. This event takes place on Saturday, February 26th with the race beginning at 11am at Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College-Williamson Campus.
Leigh Ann and other organizers encourage folks to come out and run with their pets. “People seem to enjoy it because they are encouraged to bring their furbabies, and it shows that they have more in common with one another than just running,” she says.
To celebrate their love for animals, organizers have done a variety of things to keep it interesting. “We’ve had food and supply drives, offered adoption opportunities, and had signs to remember pets that we’ve lost,” Leigh Ann says. “We’re always looking for ways to keep it interesting, and we’re open to suggestions.”
Leigh Ann hopes that, in addition to raising money for SOS, the event also raises awareness about animal welfare. “I like to think this race raises awareness for the need to spay and neuter pets, the advantages of adoption, and that it offers the opportunity for people to understand what Save Our Strays does to help the community.”
Online registration is open now, but you will also have the option to register the day of the run from 9:00am - 10:45am. Registration is $25.00 per person. To learn more about this race, check out the Facebook event page.