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Due to smoke from surrounding wildfires and to limit the spread of COVID-19 in our community, the 26th annual Barbara Schmidt Millar (BSM) Women’s Duathlon and 5K Committee has decided to switch this year’s event – originally scheduled to take place on Sept. 19 – to a virtual race.

“We made the decision to pivot to a virtual race – rather than postpone it for another year – because the funds that this event generates are so important to our friends, neighbors, and loved ones fighting breast cancer. Even during a global pandemic, cancer doesn’t stop, so why should we?,” said BSM Event Director Danielle Scallin.

Virtual races in both the running and triathlon worlds have grown in popularity since the beginning of the pandemic, giving athletes from around the world the opportunity to earn coveted medals, collect unique racing T-shirts, privately push their limits, and support a wide variety of charities, from the safety of their own backyards.

“This is a great opportunity for those who are new to running and cycling to really get out there and have some fun, at your own pace, all for a great cause,” said Scallin.

BSM Duathlon athletes or relay teams can complete the duathlon or the 5K run/walk on any day of their choosing , anywhere they like, at any time of day Sept. 19 through Oct. 19, 2021. Participants can record their results on any tracking application (such as Garmin, Strava, or Map My Run) and submit their overall times. Registration ends on Sept. 18, 2021.

Proceeds from the event go toward breast cancer services and support at Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital, as well as scholarships for female high school graduates going into the field of healthcare. According to Kimberly Parker, Executive Director of Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Foundation, which is the home of the BSM Duathlon, since the event’s inception over 1200 patients have benefited from race proceeds and $186,000 has been raised to help 71 scholarship recipients.

“The BSM Fund at Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital’s Women’s Imaging Center specifically supports low to no cost breast care services to those in our community who may not be able to afford treatment,” said Parker. “This event plays a vital role in making sure our community stays happy and healthy, for generations to come.”

“We would like to invite our community to help us continue our mission of supporting those who need it most, despite COVID-19. Please join us in participating in this vital, charitable event.”

For more information, or to register, make a donation, or sponsor the virtual event, please visit www.bsmtri.org.