Officers from law enforcement agencies in Anoka County took to the streets June 21 to run and cycle in support of Special Olympics.
The annual Special Olympics Law Enforcement Torch Run raises awareness and money for Special Olympics.
The “Flame of Hope” began in Moorhead earlier in the week and entered Anoka County on Highway 10 in Ramsey the morning of June 21 en route to Stillwater High School and the Special Olympics Summer Games, which began later in the day.
The runners and bikers were accompanied by squad cars from various law enforcement agencies with their lights activated to control traffic along the torch run route.
The route through Anoka County began on Highway 10 in Ramsey and continued to the Seventh Avenue exit in Anoka, then on Seventh Avenue to the Main Street intersection, where runners and cyclists turned east and followed Main Street through Anoka and Coon Rapids to Foley Boulevard.
Then participants headed south on Foley to Northdale Boulevard before the route went east on Northdale to the Coon Rapids border with Blaine at University Avenue and 109th Avenue.
The route continued on 109th Avenue to Lexington Avenue in Blaine, then to the intersection with North Road (101st Avenue), turning onto North Road to Hodgson Road (County Road J), where the runners and cyclists met up with Ramsey County law enforcement participants to continue the journey.
The torch run through Anoka County covered 23.6 miles, beginning at 9:40 a.m. in Ramsey and ending at the Anoka County border with Ramsey County at 2:23 p.m.
Runners and cyclists taking part in the Anoka County leg included law enforcement officers from the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office, the Minnesota Correctional Facility at Lino Lakes and police departments from Anoka, Blaine, Coon Rapids, Ramsey, Centennial Lakes and Lino Lakes.
The final leg ended at Stillwater High School for the ceremonial lighting of the torch June 21 for the start of the 2013 Special Olympics Summer Games.
The Law Enforcement Torch Run is the largest grassroots fundraiser and public awareness event for Special Olympics in the world.
Special Olympics Minnesota offers children and adults with intellectual disabilities year-round sports training and competition; there are more than 7,500 Special Olympic Minnesota athletes, according to the organization’s website.
Peter Bodley is at [email protected]