Program helps kids get new shoes for Bridge Run

MT. PLEASANT, SC (WCSC) - In a little over a week 40,000 people will make their way across the Ravenel Bridge. Thanks to a few local organizations, some kids will be lacing up brand new shoes and running the race for the first time.

The Cooper River Bridge Run has been a tradition for over 30 years and draws in people of all ages. Now the organization run buddies is making the bridge run a fitness goal for these young first-timers.

"It's for any kid any shape any size so we come together for group runs either at a school or recreation center," said Louis Vuhasz with the organization Run Buddies.

These kids from downtown Charleston have been running with their mentors twice a week. It's a program to get kids outside and avoid obesity.

"My favorite part is to meet new people and talk to new people," said Taij Stroud with Run Buddies.

Stroud is 14 and he and other kids his age are getting fitted for new shoes and T-shirts, something founder Louis Yuhall says is great for their fitness.

"A lot of kids from Title I schools are wearing regular shoes, sometimes flats and street shoes," Yuhall said.

Yuhall says the new kicks will get the kids excited about staying in shape.

"It helps boost their confidence and physically helps them perform better," Yuhall said.

Stroud is laced up and ready to go. He even has a few tips for first time bridge runners.

"I'm going to wake up stretch and eat a big breakfast," Stroud said. "Because if you don't you'll get tired automatically."

The shoes are provided by Tri-Fitness in Mt. Pleasant. So far they have over 40 kids signed up to run the race.

Yuhaul says they plan to start up another run buddies group in Mt. Pleasant next week and hope to keep the program growing.

The Bridge Run is Saturday March 31.

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