West Ventura County Walk to End Alzheimer’s: The Collection at Riverpark

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Photos courtesy Janelle Boesch, Alzheimer’s Association California Central Coast Chapter

Over 300 area residents participated in this year’s West Ventura County Walk to End Alzheimer’s at The Collection at Riverpark on Saturday, Sept. 25, while others joined from home by walking in their own neighborhoods.

On Walk day, families, teams, sponsors and volunteers came together to view a brief opening ceremony and experience the Promise Flower Garden, where colorful flowers representing participants’ personal connections to the fight to end Alzheimer’s and all other dementia decorated the field of Townsquare Park. Walkers then completed their route throughout The Collection shopping center, returning to a mariachi band performance. A dog costume contest was held and judged by special guests Oxnard City Councilmember Bryan McDonald and his wife, Lorraine.

The event raised more than $118,000 to fund research and local services throughout Ventura County, including support groups, education programs, care consultations, respite grants and a 24/7 Helpline (800.272.3900). Thanks to the efforts of the Walk’s co-chairs Pedro Chavez and Gabriella Rodriguez and their hard-working committee, the amount raised surpassed the walk’s original goal of $100,000 and more than doubled its fundraising amount from 2020.

“We are so grateful to all of our sponsors and participants — and we’re especially thankful for our dedicated committee members who made this year’s event such a success,” said Aracely Avila, development manager, Alzheimer’s Association California Central Coast Chapter. “While the in-person event looked different than in years past, we heard from so many participants that coming together again — even with social distancing and other COVID precautions in place — meant a lot to them, especially after such a challenging year.”

Donations can still be made to the Walk to End Alzheimer’s through Dec. 31 at act.alz.org/westventura. The California Central Coast Chapter will be hosting four more walks this year, including the East Ventura County Walk on Oct. 23, the San Luis Obispo Walk on Oct. 30, and the Santa Barbara Walk on Nov. 8.

To register and for more information, visit alz.org/walk