Run­ners strip down to undies to raise money for good cause

Chil­dren’s Tu­mor Foun­da­tion re­cip­i­ent of fun ef­fort in cold

The Detroit News - - METRO - BY SARAH RAHAL The Detroit News

eDetroit — Run­ners bore the cold in their bare skin Sat­ur­day, strut­ting down Wood­ward in their undies for a good cause.

With an am­bu­lance on standby, about 420 run­ners stripped down to lacy bras, col­or­ful tu­tus, shiny red briefs and lots of Cupid’s wings in 18-de­gree weather to par­tic­i­pate in the 7th an­nual Cupid’s Undie Run, which raises money for the Chil­dren’s Tu­mor Foun­da­tion.

Sim­i­lar brief 0.8-mile runs were tak­ing place in 40 U.S. cities with over 14,000 undie-clad folks ex­pected to par­tic­i­pate through­out Fe­bru­ary. It is to sup­port those af­fected by neu­rofi­bro­mato­sis, a rare ge­netic dis­or­der that causes tu­mors to grow in nerves through­out the body and raises money for re­search to #endNF.

With a goal of $92,500 this year, na­tional devel­op­ment man­ager Amelia Eu­dai­ley hopes the run will have more par­tic­i­pants next year.

“I hope it gains more at­ten­tion. I don’t think peo­ple re­ally know about neu­rofi­bro­mato­sis, but it’s more com­mon than ALS or other dis­eases,” Eu­dai­ley said. “It’s the first undie-run with a mis­sion and it’s un­like any­thing else out there.”

In 2010, a group of do-good­ers, led by co-founders Bren­dan Han­ra­han, Chad Leathers and Bobby Gill, dropped their pants and ran through the D.C. cold to raise money for re­search to help end neu­rofi­bro­mato­sis.

“They ran in their undies be­cause those af­fected with NF can’t cover up their tu­mors, so they de­cided to strip down in sol­i­dar­ity,” ac­cord­ing to the web­site.

Since 2010, Cupid’s Char­ity was cre­ated as a non­profit and has raised over $16.9 mil­lion to the Chil­dren’s Tu­mor Foun­da­tion.

The Fill­more was packed with peo­ple dressed as su­per­heroes, Ghost­busters, the Su­per Mario crew, and cos­play roles like Zelda and Link and were hounded for pic­tures with at­ten­dees.

“Peo­ple re­ally go all-out on their cos­tumes and that’s what adds to the fun,” Eu­dai­ley said. “My fa­vorites are the Vil­lage Peo­ple.”

Arthur Do­let­zki of Dex­ter and his the­ater friends dressed up like “Pi­rates of the Car­ib­bean.” The group has ran to­gether at the event since 2015.

“We heard about it and thought it sounded fun, oddly,” said Do­let­zki, 27, dressed as Jack Spar­row. “I ran out­side do­ing the Capt. Jack run, which was su­per hard in these high heel boots. Each year, we try to top our pre­vi­ous cos­tumes. Last year, we were the ‘Wizard of Oz’ char­ac­ters and maybe next year we’ll be the Jus­tice League.”

Kurt Ryan, who has par­tic­i­pated in the run for the last three years dressed as Cap­tain Amer­ica, said this year was es­pe­cially fun.

“It’s amaz­ing the peo­ple you meet and it’s for such a good cause,” said Ryan, 28, of War­ren. “There were rays of sun­shine and I could have kept go­ing. Last year, the run was can­celed be­cause it was too cold.”

Made­line Lafave of War­ren said the only thing the run needs is more par­tic­i­pants.

“A few years ago, you could hardly walk in this place,” said Lafave, 26, dressed as Won­der Woman. “We want more peo­ple here be­cause it would be bet­ter and raise more money.”

Max Or­tiz / The Detroit News

Par­tic­i­pants hit the streets around the The Fill­more Detroit for Cupid’s Undie Run, a fundraiser to find a cure for neu­rofi­bro­mato­sis, on Sat­ur­day.

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