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Thu., Sep. 3
Serving the communities of Massena and Potsdam, New York
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Prom night takes to the streets in formal fun run


POTSDAM — Runners in prom dresses and dress shirts will dash through the streets of Potsdam on Saturday to benefit a scholarship through the Sandstoner Foundation.

The scholarship was created in honor of Karen E. Kirchgasser, the England-born woman who grew up in Potsdam and worked in the U.S. Foreign Service before dying of breast cancer in 2012.

The run is organized by Potsdam resident Peggy A. Brusso, who was a classmate of Ms. Kirchgasser through high school. Since the run is taking place close to prom night, Ms. Brusso thought it would be fun to hold it in formalwear.

“I just thought it would be something different and goofy,” she said.

The 3K run will begin and end at Half Ton’s sports bar, 141 Market St. Registration begins at noon and is $10, which will be donated to the scholarship and the Potsdam Booster Club.

“With prom day coming up, why not get out an old prom dress or an old ball gown that’s sitting in the back of your closet or at a thrift store and throw it on and have fun with it?” Ms. Brusso said.

The run will be held rain or shine. The forecast predicts runners might be in for a soaking.

“It’s going to be more of a double-dog dare than a run,” Ms. Brusso said.

The first person to cross the finish line wearing a dress will win $100, while the first to do so wearing a tie will win $50.

Playing cards will be handed out to runners and walkers at stops along the way. Whoever has the best poker hand at the end of the race will win an additional prize.

The event will end up back and Half Ton’s with food and an ugly dress contest.

Despite living in Washington D.C. and serving in Moscow and around the world, Ms. Kirchgasser always loved Potsdam, Ms. Brusso said.

“Karen really loved being in Potsdam when she had the opportunity,” she said. “She was all over the world. It’s just really nice to support the memory of someone who loved where they grew up.”

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