Fourth annual Hallmark Health walk hits its ‘Stride’

Medford Transcript

Sept. 29, 2011

By Jonathan Pickering

The route for this year’s Hallmark Health Stride for Health Walk has changed — and so have some of the participants.

For it’s fourth year, Hallmark has teamed up with the Boston Bruins to support community education efforts for cardiovascular health. In past years, the walk has rounded Spot Pond, but this year will take place from the TD Bank Garden in Boston.

The 3K walk will begin at 8 a.m. on Sunday, Oct. 2 at the 100 Legends Way location and continue through Boston’s North End, looping back to the Garden, where a family-oriented barbecue, complete with activities and games, will be topped off with a free raffle for walkers, giving away two B’s tickets.  

“There will also be a few surprises for fans,” said Joanne Schamberg, chairman of the volunteer organization coordinating the event. “We already have over 250 pre-registered walkers. The Bruins mascot, Blades, will be there, along with the Ice Girls.”

Danielle Patturelli, a nurse at the Cardiovascular Center, said the funds raised will go towards CPR training.

“We want to stress the community benefits of this event,” said Patturelli, who is also coordinator of community education for Hallmark. “All the money raised for the event goes towards CPR training we provide to students, who in turn make a pledge to train their friends and family concerning CPR and what to do if someone is choking. Each individual student receives their own kit and we teach on-site.”

Patturelli said that during the past three years, Hallmark has trained more than 1,000 students annually, targeting Medford, Malden and Melrose in the past. She added Hallmark is expanding to Wakefield and Reading high schools with this year’s walk.

“The training gets implemented into the student’s curriculum, through health or gym class,” Patturelli said. “We basically stress how fortunate, as a community, we are to be able to provide this training.

It’s training like this we practice at Hallmark that has made our response time to heart attack victims from when the enter the center to treatment, under 90 minutes.”

Shamberg added Boston isn’t the only place for patients to receive quality cardiovascular care.

“Surrounding communities like Melrose, Medford, Wakefield and others can offer the same kind of great health care,” she said.

For those interested in joining the walk, there are a number of different ways to get involved. You can sign-up to participate in the walk itself, make a donation, sponsor a walker, or become a virtual walker.

“We know it’s a busy time of year, so not everyone can walk in person,” said Schamberg. “So we set up an online tracking system where sponsors can still make a donation and be part of the action even if they can't make the walk.”

Signing up for the Stride For Health Walk can be done through Hallmark’s website at www.hallmarkhealth.org/stride-for-health-2011.html or you can pick up the phone and call the Development Office at 781-979-6100.

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