Runners will hit the streets next Saturday to help raise money to buy athletic shoes for Helena’s youth.

The third annual Running for Montana’s Future will begin at 10 a.m. on Aug. 25.

Last year, the race earned nearly $5,000. Attorney General Steve Bullock spearheaded the event to encourage healthy attitudes and initiate positive relations between teens and law enforcement officers.

“It’s education in a fun setting. It grows every year,” Bullock said.

Local police took the idea and ran with it. Other cities have hosted similar events but Helena’s run has been the most successful.

The race will consist of a six-kilometer event, with a $20 entry fee, and a free one-kilometer fun walk for families. It will take place at Memorial Park. Live music will accompany the event along with informational booths.

Domingo Leveque-Zapata, an officer with the Helena Police Department, said so far 60 pairs of shoes have been purchased for youth in the Helena area through the Angel Fund. Local teens fill out an application form with their information, shoe size and style preference. The sneakers are then delivered by the school resource officers like Leveque-Zapata.

“It’s just like Christmas for the kids,” he said about the year-round program.

The teens aren’t the only ones who will get new kicks. The top placing man and woman in the 6 kilometer race will receive new running shoes.

To register, log onto www.racemontana.com or visit the Running for Montana’s Future facebook page.

Reporter Angela Brandt:

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