Registration is still open for the Wilmington Riverfront event which features bands, local radio and TV personalities, activities for kids, treats for dogs, vendors, food and refreshments, raffles and prizes.

The Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s, presented by Genesis HealthCare, returns to Riverfront Wilmington in Wilmington Saturday, Oct. 21.

As many as 2,000 walkers, along with their four-legged friends will put on their purple and begin checking in at 8 a.m. At 9 a.m. they will participate in the Promise Garden Ceremony, then, Walk to End Alzheimer's at 9:30 a.m.

“We’re expecting good weather and a great crowd that I know will help us meet our two hundred and fifty thousand dollar goal to fund Alzheimer’s research, and care and support programs,” said Cathy Rossi, Mid-Atlantic AAA vice president, Delaware Valley Chapter board member and Wilmington Walk planning committee chair.

Before and after the walk, participants will be treated to entertainment and special guests, including:

• Live band performance by Club Phred,

• Special appearance by Miss American Coed Delaware Teen, 18-year-old Aliyah Bonsu,

• Kids area with face painting, games and prizes,

• Special section for pooches with doggie treats and more,

• Raffle featuring great prizes,

• Snacks and beverages provided by hospitality sponsor, ShopRite,

• Vendor and sponsor tables with company literature and promotional giveaways.

News reporters and anchors from television presenting sponsor, WTXF-FOX 29 TV, will appear at the walk to help emcee the pre-walk program, as well as meet and greet walkers at FOX 29’s sponsor table, where they can pick up station promotional items and photos autographed by their favorite on-air talent on the spot.

Radio sponsor, Delmarva Broadcasting Company will broadcast live from the walk – starting with WSTW-93.7 FM’s Joe Allen and the Morning Show Wake-Up Crew from 7:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., followed immediately by a NewsTalk Sports Station WDEL-101.7 FM / 1150 AM three-hour live on location broadcast at 9:30 a.m. Both live shows will feature interviews with Delaware Valley Chapter staff, walkers, donors and other supporters.

Organizers have added a new symbol of hope to the annual Promise Garden Ceremony – a signature element of every Walk to End Alzheimer’s that features fabric pinwheel flowers in colors representing each walker’s connection to Alzheimer’s or a related disorder.

Typically, during the ceremony, walk participants who hold a blue flower have the disease or another dementia, while those carrying a yellow flower are caring for someone living with dementia. A purple flower indicates the person holding it has lost someone to Alzheimer’s, and walkers holding an orange flower may not necessarily have a connection to dementia, but support the Alzheimer’s Association cause.

“This year we are adding a new, single white flower to be held by a child,” said Jody Trinsey, the chapter’s Delaware/South Jersey walk manager. “Because Alzheimer’s is a fatal, degenerative brain disease that has no cure or treatment and can’t even be prevented, there are no survivors. So the child and the white flower will represent Alzheimer’s first survivor.”

Registration open for walk

Walk to End Alzheimer’s registration is still open for anyone wishing to join any team or start their own with family, friends or coworkers at alz.org/WALK. Registration assistance or further details are available by calling the chapter’s toll-free 24/7 Helpline, 1-800-272-3900.

Genesis HealthCare is the presenting sponsor for the Delaware Valley Chapter’s entire Walk to End Alzheimer's series of seven events. Walks have already taken place in Berks and Lehigh Counties in Pennsylvania, Cumberland County and Atlantic City, New Jersey and Rehoboth Beach in Delaware. The chapter’s final walk of the season will take place in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Saturday, Nov. 11 at Citizens Bank Park.

What is Alzheimer’s disease?

Alzheimer’s is not a normal part of aging. It is a degenerative brain disease that causes severe memory loss and changes to thinking abilities and behavior that interfere with daily life. As the disease progresses, one eventually becomes unable to care for oneself. Alzheimer’s is the sixth-leading cause of death in the nation, and the only one of the top 10 with no cure, way to prevent it, or even slow its progression. There are no survivors. The most common type of dementia, Alzheimer’s affects 5.5 million people in the United States, including an estimated 200,000 who are not yet age 65 and have Younger-Onset Alzheimer’s. Without a major scientific breakthrough, the number of Americans with Alzheimer’s is projected to nearly triple to 16 million by 2050.

About the Alzheimer’s Association Delaware Valley Chapter

The Alzheimer’s Association is the world leader in Alzheimer’s research and support. The Delaware Valley Chapter, headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, is the local arm of the national nonprofit organization, and operates Regional and Branch Offices that serve 18 counties in Delaware, South Jersey, and Southeastern Pennsylvania. The Chapter provides programs and services to more than 294,000 individuals and their families who are affected by Alzheimer’s or a related disorder. The Chapter’s Delaware Regional Office is located at 240 N. James St., Newport, DE 19804 and its Sussex County Branch Office is in Georgetown at 108 N. Bedford St. Information about the chapter and the disease is available at alz.org/delval, or the 24/7 toll-free Helpline, 1-800-272-3900. The chapter’s social media handle is alzdelval and is available on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.