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FIESTA race kicks off ALS awareness month
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CUMMING — ALS Awareness Month begins Saturday with the seventh annual FIESTA 15-kilometer and 5-kilometer race, benefiting the Emory ALS Center in Atlanta.

Formerly known as the ALS Run for Life 5K, the FIESTA 15K/5K features a 15K distance for long runners, a 5K distance on a certified Peachtree qualifying course and a Fun Run at the Forsyth Conference Center at Lanier Tech in Cumming. Participants will receive a T-shirt and goodie bag. All 15K finishers will receive a medal. Awards will be presented for both races.

Online registration closes at 3 p.m. today. Race day registration will be at 6:45 a.m. The FIESTA 15K starts at 7:45 a.m. with the 5K following at 8:05 a.m. The Fun Run is at 9 a.m.

The post-race party will have music and refreshments. For more information, visit

Sixteen teams have already raised more than $14,000 for ALS. The teams will pay tribute to their loved ones living with or who have died from the disease Saturday.

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a neuromuscular disease that attacks the brain and spinal cord. It is universally fatal, taking away the ability to move, speak, swallow and ultimately breathe. The average life expectancy after diagnosis is between two and five years. About 30,000 people in the U.S. are living with ALS; more than 500 are in Georgia.