Sarah Maginnis | Lehi Free Press
The annual Millie’s Princess Run was held on Saturday, June 18, 2022, at Thanksgiving Point. People of all ages gathered to show support and raise money for Millie’s Princess Foundation, dedicated to raising money for families impacted by childhood cancer. Every year, this foundation focuses on helping two local families with the financial burden that comes with cancer. Among many other activities, there is a 5k called Millie’s Princess Run to help raise donations for the chosen families’ medical bills.
Millie Flamm, the inspiration for this event, was a young girl who died from leukemia on June 18, 2013. During the treatments, friends of the Flamm family organized a run to raise money for the medical bills and to show their support. Years later, this event continues, helping other families experiencing the same hardships.
“Everyone here supports this event and believes in what they’re doing,” said volunteer Robert Giesbers. “There are so many activities here; the best part is seeing all the kids having fun.”
The event includes various activities to entertain kids, including bounce houses, a ropes course and people dressed up as Disney characters. Princes and princesses wandered around the venue touphold the concept of the princess run, creating a fun-filled environment for the children. Adults enjoyed the numerous food trucks and the silent auction, with all donations going toward the Millie’s Princess Foundation.
“I love seeing all the costumes and the kids participating,” said volunteer Becky Schum. “This organization is unique because they focus on two children, naming them a prince and a princess every year. Focusing on two kids makes them even more celebrated because they feel everyone’s attention and support directed towards them, and I think that’s really special.”
Among the many booths set up at the event, “Be the Match” presented the crowd with information and the opportunity to sign up for the National Bone Marrow Transplant registry. This booth was especially meaningful because its mission is to help patients combat certain cancers such as leukemia, the same cancer Millie Flamm experienced. “Essentially, what we do is help people with blood cancer,” said “Be the Match” volunteer Matt Jensen. “For example, someone with leukemia might have a weakened immune system and need a bone marrow transplant or a stem cell transplant. This registry gives them a chance to get those procedures if they need it.”
“This event is unique because it targets a lot of the younger population. Getting kids involved and educated on cancer is important,” said Connely Packard, another volunteer.
“Getting the next generation involved means that you’re going to see a lot more people actively trying to fight these issues in the future,” said Jensen.