Although the Julie Run just turned 18-years-old last month, its namesake, Julie LeBlanc, is approaching her 80th birthday this month — which LeBlanc said is a good reason step down from being the coordinator of the event.
“I wanted to step aside while I’m still kicking,” said the soon-to-be octogenarian. “I’ve been working on it diligently for 18 years. I just think it’s time for someone else to take over — hopefully, someone who will continue to take (the event) in a positive direction and who will keep the tradition going.”
The Julie Run is the Open Door Outreach Center’s annual 5K race held at Walled Lake Northern High School to raise money to help provide food, clothing, and financial assistance for those in need. In the past few years, the race has expanded to include a 10K race and several food drives.
“It’s a much needed fund-raiser for Open Door so that we can keep providing the services that we’ve been providing the past 31 years,” LeBlanc said. “I’m hoping someone will step up to the plate and give it a try. It’s a lot of work but a lot of fun. It’s gratifying every year to see how much you can raise for Open Door. Even after the race is over, we still continue to get money from people wanting to help.”
According to LeBlanc, they are looking to those who have previously volunteered for the Julie Run to take the helm, as well as others already involved in the community.
“Although we haven’t picked anyone yet, I’m looking to meet with a few people next week and go over some details and to see if they want to take over the job,” she said.
While LeBlanc will no longer oversee the race, she said she plans to remain a trustee on Open Door’s board, which she has been a part of since it was created.