Buddy Walk to be held Sunday, Oct. 6 in Kalispell

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THE BUDDY Walk in 2018 had more than 300 people and event organizers have moved it to Kidsport Complex in Kalispell this year so more can be accomodated. The walk is part of a nationwide effort to promote awareness about Down Syndrome. It will be held Sunday, Oct. 6. (Courtesy photo)

The third annual Flathead Valley Buddy Walk, part of a nation-wide effort to promote awareness about Down Syndrome, will be held Sunday, Oct. 6, at the Kidsport Soccer Complex in Kalispell.

Festivities begin at 11:30 a.m. and the 1-mile fun walk will begin at 1 p.m.

To register, visit www.ds-stride.org/flatheadbuddywalk.

The family-friendly event is hosted by the Kalispell Chapter of the Montana Down Syndrome Association, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting people with Down Syndrome and their families.

In 2018, more than 350 people attended the event that raised more than $5,000 to support Flathead Valley families.

Following the success of last year’s event, and in anticipation of an

even larger crowd, the event is moving to Kidsport.

This year’s celebration will feature an easy 1-mile fun walk, family and children’s activities, raffles, music, food trucks and more.

One of the highlights will be an interactive exhibit hosted by the Glacier Children’s Museum.

“Last year’s event was a huge success and we’re excited to build on that success this year,” said Sarah Reynolds, vice president of the Kalispell Chapter of the Montana Down Syndrome Association. “The Kidsport complex has more parking, is more accessible and will help this annual event continue to flourish.”

October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month and the Flathead Valley Buddy Walk is one of 250 events around the country to celebrate the extraordinary lives of people with Down Syndrome in Northwest Montana.

The Kalispell Chapter of the Montana Down Syndrome Association was established in 2017.

After successful events in 2017 and 2018, the local group is now able to offer financial assistance to local families of people with Down Syndrome for medical, educational or therapeutic needs.

Families interested in applying for grants are encouraged to visit MTDSA.org for more information.

This year, the local chapter hopes to raise more than $7,500 to benefit local families.

The Kidsport Soccer Complex is located at 835 Parkway Drive in Kalispell.

For more information, contact Sarah Reynolds at sarah@mtdsa.org or 406-407-6688 or Ashley Glover Franz at ashley@mtdsa.org or 406-781-7588.

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