Dozens of Sudburians gathered at Delki Dozzi Park in the city’s West End on Saturday morning for the first in-person Parkinson Superwalk since 2019.
Claire Sheridan, one of the organizers, welcomed the crowd to the event.
“It feels great to finally be back in person,” Sheridan said. “It shows a diagnosis doesn’t stop us from living.”
Mayor Brian Bigger was also on hand. He said before the pandemic, the Superwalk was an event he always made a point of attending.
“It’s always great to see such a turnout for the Superwalk,” Bigger said. “It has given me a much better appreciation for the struggles of people here and across Northern Ontario. Thank you for being here to support your family members and friends.”
Wayne Arcand, president of the local chapter of Parkinson Canada, was also on hand to welcome the walkers.
“We are fortunate to be able to gather together on a beautiful sunny day,” Arcand said. “It is a privilege for me to be part of the Superwalk for so many years.”
After greetings and some stretches, the group set out behind a Parkinson Superwalk banner to walk the track at Delki Dozzi. Incidentally, the track was resurfaced this year as part of the city’s playground revitalization efforts.
Top Glove Boxing Academy, which offers a fitness program specifically for those with Parkinsons, had a booth at the event. If you’re curious about the gym’s Rock Steady Boxing program, you can learn more here.
Sheridan told Sudbury.com the walk has grown in size every year and raises tens of thousands of dollars for Parkinson research and support for those with the disease. In 2019, the last time the event was held in person, it raised nearly $30,000.
She said Greater Sudbury is fortunate to have two neurologists to provide care for those with the disease, but the city and the North is lacking in one core service: a mobility clinic. She said people in Northern Ontario now have to travel to Toronto to access the services of such a clinic, something she said needs to change.