ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – Runners raced through Eldridge Park for the Heather’s Home 5k at 8:30 a.m. this morning, and proceeds hit over $10,000 raised for children in need.

The Race Director, Katie Rhodes, said this year’s planning was atypical due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“This is our fourth run that we’ve done here at Eldridge Park, we’re very excited to be able to have the race,” said Rhodes. “Obviously it’s been a different year for us.”

However, Rhodes made a concerned effort to work with new regulations and to continue the race this year.

“All the proceeds go to support Heather’s home Ministries, which are orphanages in Haiti and Ghana,” said Rhodes. “Our goal is to raise $7,500 for the children, and obviously with this pandemic, it’s been very hard for them in Haiti and Ghana. The money is so needed right now.”

The Women’s First Place Runner, Megan Jacoby, said running was an escape during the pandemic for her and her friends.

“It’s definitely been great for mental health, as far as the COVID stuff goes it’s honestly probably been the most positive thing,” said Jacoby. “It’s a little bit more motivating and we’re super happy to give back to a good cause.”

Even the little ones got out of the house had their own fun run. However, Rhodes says planning the race wasn’t easy.

“There were a couple times where it was like, ‘Okay this is really hard,’ but you know it’s the children, it’s for the children,” said Rhodes. “So I was determined we’re going to do what we need to do to make this happen. We kind of refer to the kids as our kids it’s a way that we can help them. We can’t all go there but we can give.”