Last year, the Aledo Children’s AdvoCats were all smiles when the organization’s inaugural Run, Walk or Crawl for Our Kids event raised nearly $26,000.

This year, expectations are set even higher, and Suzi Prokell, chair for the event, is optimistic about the outcome.

“We are just now kicking off the sponsorship drive on Monday,” Prokell said. “This year, we hope to have 100 to 150 more runners than last year.”

AdvoCats member Martha Bronson said the phones have already begun lighting up with local businesses eager to show support by lending financial backing.

“Run, Walk or Crawl for Our Kids was a huge success last year,” Bronson said. “We’ve already started receiving calls from businesses about sponsoring this year’s event. We hope that the new Platinum Sponsorship opportunity will bring this event to the next level.”

Sponsorships come in a number of levels including Bronze, Silver, Gold and the recently added Title Platinum level.

According to the AdvoCats, all sponsors receive publicity in area newspapers and throughout the community on store signs, posters, flyers and more.

Prokell acknowledged the major influence and support local businesses lent to the success of last year’s event.

“Nearly 400 runners and dozens of businesses and community organizations supported the race,” she said. “Because the race is now an established event, we expect it to have even more participation this year.”

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The AdvoCats are a non-profit organization aimed at aiding underprivileged children in Aledo and the surrounding area.

All proceeds from the event go directly to the group’s cause.

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