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Major fundraiser to support pediatric cancer research and care at Upstate steps off Saturday

Several dozen members of Team Upstate gather for a team photo at Paige's Butterfly Run in downtown Syracuse.

Thousands of runners, walkers and their fans—including dozens of Upstate employees—will descend on downtown Syracuse June 8 for the annual Paige’s Butterfly Run to support pediatric cancer research and pediatric cancer care at Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital. The 2019 run begins and ends Saturday morning near Clinton Square, in partnership with Taste of Syracuse.

The event honors the memory of Paige Yeomans Arnold, who was treated at the Dr. William J. Waters Center for Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders at Upstate when she was 8 years old. Paige’s parents, Chris Arnold and Ellen Yeomans, began their fundraising efforts with a run to honor Paige in 1997. The organization has since raised more than $3 million and all of that money stays in Central New York.

The Upstate Foundation helps manage proceeds from the run and disperses funding to support activities and programs for patients and families at Upstate. Those include a Paige’s Sibling Event Day; a new Hope Event series, which provides a fun, off-site activity outside of the hospital and treatment; as well as funds for family assistance, survivor wellness, hospitality, burial expenses and more.

Paige’s Butterfly Run has always been focused on supporting patients and families with the many things that accompany a diagnosis and treatment.

“Most families have insurance of some sort, and there’s always Medicaid, but it’s those other needs not covered by insurance that Chris Arnold and his family wanted to make sure there’s funding for to support families in every way possible,” said Toni Gary, director of community relations and development for Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital and the Upstate Foundation.

The Foundation has also helped the Paige’s organization create an endowment to support programming well into the future, which matches the mission of supporting “patients of today and patients of tomorrow.”

“We have a wonderful relationship with the Upstate Foundation,” said Paige’s Butterfly Run Executive Director Mary Kate Intaglietta. “They are our longtime partners and people don’t always realize the support they provide, from making sure the donation sites are ready to go to helping manage the funds.

“Yes, we’re helping the patients of today and the patients of tomorrow by funding needs, but we’re also supporting research that will help us find cures.”

Upstate has two teams registered for the 2019 race, with more than 70 people participating. For more information on Paige’s Butterfly Run, including how to donate, visit www.pbrun.org.

Caption: Team Upstate has more than 75 people participating in the 2019 race.