The Ashland Kiwanis and Ashland Schools Foundation are co-sponsoring the third annual Ashland Monster Dash Fun Run

The Ashland Kiwanis and Ashland Schools Foundation are co-sponsoring the third annual Ashland Monster Dash Fun Run on Saturday, Oct. 29 in Lithia Park.

This community event has been building each year, with nearly 500 participants last year, according to race officials.

"We're so excited to be hosting this fun event for families throughout the Rogue Valley," stated Jeanne Walcher, race director, in a press release. "Now that we're holding the event on a Saturday morning, we've added a 10K race to this year's event. It should be a challenging run for our more serious distance runners."

The costume contest for registered entrants begins at 9:30 a.m. on the lawn at Lithia Park, followed by the one-mile fun run and walk at 10 a.m.

The 5K and 10K races begin together at 10:45 a.m. All three races start and finish at Pioneer Hall and running-friendly costumes are encouraged. The out-and-back race courses should give plenty of opportunity for runners to view most participants' costumes. Prizes will be awarded for runners by age group and for best costumes by individuals and themed groups. There will also be random prize drawings throughout the morning.

More than 100 sponsors have contributed to the success of this event. All profits from the Monster Dash go toward the Ashland Schools Foundation grants in the Ashland public schools. The Ashland Schools Foundation is a 501c3 charity that raises money to support quality education in the Ashland public schools. Their grants to the Ashland public schools this school year will total at least $240,000.

"I hope we'll have lots of new entrants in the Monster Dash this year," said Susan Bacon, director of the Ashland Schools Foundation. "We've worked hard to make it affordable for families, lowering the price so all kids through age 18 pay just $10 even on race day."

There are also a limited number of scholarships for families who can't afford the registration fee, Bacon said.

For information, or to register online, see the event website at www.AshlandKiwanisMonsterDash.com.

Registration forms are also available at all Ashland public schools and Rogue Valley Runners in downtown Ashland. Register early for lower entrance fees and to buy this year's T-shirt. For information call Walcher at 541-488-4897 or Bacon at 541-482-8197 .