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Walk MS Event Set for Carlsbad this Saturday

First of two Walk MS fundraisers over next two weeks in San Diego County

Carlsbad CA— The National Multiple Sclerosis Society in San Diego will present two San Diego County Credit Union Walk MS fundraisers over the next two weeks.

Carlsbad is the site of the National MS Society’s first of two Walk MS events. This Saturday evening, April 16 in Carlsbad, about 3,500 people are expected to walk and help raise about $400,000 in donations. The three-mile walk will be along Armanda Drive overlooking the Carlsbad Flower Fields and looping around the Legoland California theme park. Check-in begins at 4 p.m. The walk begins at 5 p.m.

It’s the first time since 2006 that the National MS Society’s North County’s Walk MS fundraiser in Carlsbad will be held in the evening. National MS Society officials said walkers will experience beautiful sunset views while spending an evening with friends and family members. The festival site will feature live music, vendor booths, kid zone and more.

One week later, on Saturday morning, April 23 at NTC Park at Liberty Station, 2455 Cushing Road, in San Diego’s Point Loma community, another 3,500 people are expected to walk three miles along San Diego Bay and help raise about $460,000 in donations. Check-in begins at 7 a.m. The walk begins at 8 a.m.

Also attending at Walk MS at Liberty Station will be singer-songwriter and Broadway performer David Osmond, a member of the entertaining Osmond family and a nephew of Donny and Marie Osmond. David Osmond, who was diagnosed with MS in 2006 at age 26, will attend and sing the National Anthem, plus his newest song, “I Can Do This,” a song about his personal journey with relapsing MS (www.youtube.com/watch?v=2l1lTkKsaDs).

David Osmond also is involved as an inspirational MS advocate in “Our Voice in Song” (www.OurVoiceInSong.com), an educational campaign from Novartis Pharmaceutical Corp. that aims to empower people to take charge and become more active managers of their disease. The “Our Voice in Song” campaign provides resources for people to learn more about relapsing MS, including tips on how to actively manage the condition and questions people can ask healthcare practitioners to advocate for themselves and help optimize their care.

David Osmond

David Osmond

It’s the 26th year for Walk MS events in San Diego that raise funds for MS research and programs and services for people with MS, an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that interrupts the flow of information within the brain and between the brain and body.

San Diego County Credit Union (SDCCU), San Diego’s largest locally-owned financial institution, is returning as title sponsor of Walk MS at NTC Park. SDCCU has supported the National MS Society’s Walk MS for the past 18 years, and has served as title sponsor since 2002. Over the years, SDCCU’s sponsorship support for Walk MS has exceeded $1 million, according to the National MS Society.

Presenting sponsors of the 2016 San Diego County Credit Union Walk MS include NBC 7 San Diego, KyXy 96.5, Energy 103.7 and Sycuan Casino. Other sponsors include Biogen, Sanofi Genzyme, Mother To Baby, Ability Magazine, San Diego Business Journal, KPBS and Langers Juice. The National MS Society’s national Walk MS sponsor is Novartis.

Admission is free to attend Walk MS. On-site registration will be available. Event information is available at www.WalkMS.org. Walkers will have the opportunity to earn prizes, including t-shirts, movie tickets and gift cards, based on the amount of donations they collect. Free snacks and beverages will be provided to walkers, plus live music and a finish-line celebration.

Walk MS is known for drawing a large number of teams representing businesses, neighborhoods, clubs, community groups, churches and family members and friends of a person with MS. Many teams come up with a team name and outfit their members with costumes, including T-shirts, hats or balloons. All it takes is four or more people to form a team.

Last year, the 2015 San Diego County Credit Union Walk MS in Carlsbad drew 3,351 walkers and volunteers and raised $402,000 in donations.

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s San Diego-based Pacific South Coast Chapter serves more than 51,500 people affected by MS living in San Diego, Orange and Imperial counties, as well as the Hawaiian islands. MS, the most common neurological disease leading to disability in young adults, is typically diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, although an estimated 8,000-to-10,000 children under the age of 18 also live with MS. Two to three times more women than men have been diagnosed with MS. An estimated 2.3 million people live with MS worldwide. MS symptoms can range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis, as well as blurred vision, loss of balance, poor coordination, slurred speech, tremors, numbness, extreme fatigue and cognitive deficits. Symptoms might be permanent, or they might come and go. By eating away at the coating that allows nerve cells to transmit messages, MS can lead to restrictive or awkward movements and mental gaps, among other problems. Studies indicate that genetic factors may make certain individuals more susceptible to the disease, but there is no evidence that MS is directly inherited.