Women's Run

Head Start team gears up for Montana Women's Run

2011-05-02T16:30:00Z 2014-08-25T10:47:58Z Head Start team gears up for Montana Women's RunBy CHELSEA KROTZER Of The Gazette Staff The Billings Gazette

Lisa Mankin isn't really a runner, but that won't stop her from participating in Saturday's 30th annual Montana Women's Run.

For her first time doing the run, the mother of six has the backing of 35 other Head Start parents to keep her motivated. The 38 children running alongside don't hurt either.

"It's my very first time doing anything like this," Mankin said.

The idea first came after the Head Start school hosted an event geared around fathers, where the students' dads would come in and read to classes.

"It was great for dads to get involved, so we heard the Women's Run was coming up and thought it was time to do something with the moms now," Mankin said.

This is the first time that Head Start has sponsored a team in the race's history. The Head Start Parent Police Council, Montana Women's Run and the Jeanette Christensen Memorial Fund provided 19 scholarships to those who wanted to participate, but couldn't afford to sign up.

All they had to pay was $2 for a "Team Head Start" T-shirt. The shirts are hot pink, featuring artwork from two Head Start students.

"There was a desire of parents saying we want to learn how to live a healthy lifestyle," said Julie Burton, Billings Clinic spokewoman. "Teach us how to promote activity and how to do it on a limited income."

With six kids under the age of 13, Mankin is looking forward to setting a good example.

"I hope to inspire our kids to be active," Mankin said.

Parents stopped by about noon on Monday to pick up their pink T-shirts and pose for the official team photo. They will all meet again at the school on Saturday to take a bus, arriving at the starting line together.

"We're all sisters — all women walking side by side," Burton said. "Whether you are pushing a stroller or are a competitive runner, it's that we are side by side."





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