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Race teams wanted for annual Bed Race to Aid Children

Apr 28, 2024Apr 28, 2024

The annual Bed Race to Aid Children is less than a month away, and race teams are needed.

Slated for 1 p.m. Sept. 24 in Loranger Square in downtown Monroe, teams can participate in the charity event by pushing a provided hospital bed through the square with members of the community cheering from the sidelines.

“There has to be five people on a team. One on the bed and four people pushing the bed,” said Jennifer Chesman, board chair. “The teams race two laps on the side streets around traffic cones. We close off the section for a designated route.”

Registration is open and available online at or by calling 734-242-1545. Teams can also register on race day. Participants must be at least 16 years old to compete. The registration fee is $250 per team. The goal this year is to raise $30,000.

A team consists of a runner at each corner of the bed to push the bed throughout the race while one member remains on the bed until the race ends. Rules are simple – teams can run, walk, skip or crawl.

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Chesman said costumes are not required but add excitement to the race.

“Some of the teams wear spirit wear representing their school or place of employment,” she said. “Teams can decorate the beds, and signage is encouraged. It makes the race fun for the participants and the spectators.”

All proceeds will help provide beds to Monroe County children. The average cost of a bed is $250. Each child receives a bed, new pillow, sheets, blanket, stuffed animal and a book.

The annual event is sponsored by the all-volunteer Monroe County Bed Race to Aid Children Inc. It also holds a sled race each winter to raise funds.

There are no administrative fees, and the dollars collected stay within the Monroe community.

In previous years, school organizations have competed and have been sponsored by individuals or groups that may not be able to compete themselves.

New this year will be a food truck, Nikki G’s Smoked Pizza. Proceeds from food sales will be donated to the event. Organizations like the Monroe Autism Collaborative and MCOP will be on hand to share information about the services they provide.

Nearly 5,000 beds have been donated to Monroe County children since the program started. The beds are purchased through proceeds from the annual race along with donations from churches and community members.

A “Bed Race to Aid Children” fundraiser was first started in October 2008. Two years later, the Bed Race to Aid Children Inc. of Monroe County was created as a 501(c)(3), becoming a fully charitable nonprofit corporation. Its main purpose is to raise funds to buy beds for Monroe County kids.

“One of the basic needs of someone is to have a safe space. If you’re a child who comes from a home that does not have that, a lot of things are affected if you’re not getting a good night’s sleep. A lot of the kids that we deliver beds to have been sleeping on hard floors or beds made out of blankets,” Chesman said. “A lot of the beds go to foster homes. When children are placed into foster homes, they needs beds right away. A new bed gives these children something that is theirs.”

Beds are delivered on the third Saturday of every month and volunteers are needed. Any organization needing to record volunteer service hours is invited to help. The group meets at 9 a.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 108 Washington St. in Monroe.

Anyone wanting to sponsor a team or find out more about volunteering can email Chesman at [email protected] or [email protected].

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