25th Annual ALS Walk / Run

Roseau, Minnesota


The annual Roseau ALS Walk/Run is scheduled for July 20th at 8 am in the Roseau City Park. This year they are celebrating the 25th anniversary of the event; and the Roseau ALS Fundraising Team is going all out with a huge celebration. The races start at 8:30; kicking off with the Kids Fun Run Dash and the 5K Walk/Run, followed with the 10K Run. The praise band from First United Lutheran will be leading in praise and worship songs. There will even be a bouncy house to keep the kiddos entertained! Lunch will be provided for all registered participants and volunteers. You are not going to want to miss this celebration! Registration deadline is July 1st to be guaranteed a t-shirt and goodie bag. You can still register up to the day of the event, but t-shirts are not guaranteed. They can, however, guarantee a very fun time.

Prizes will be given to the top fund-raising earners. A few ideas for fund-raising activities: Lemonade Stand, Bake Sale, Car Wash, ask your church if a fund-raising meal can be held, talk to co-workers and friends about ALS and ask them to donate. The top prize for the person who raises the most money is a $500 Amazon gift card. Prizes go out to the top ten earners

The first Roseau ALS Walk/Run was held July 1999 and was the brainchild of Lenni Billberg. Lenni is an avid sports enthusiast and, at the age of 12, rather than watch TV shows, she watched sports. Lenni learned of Lou Gehrig and his journey with ALS; disease that is nicknamed after him. While a young 6th grader she approached her mother, Arlene Billberg, and requested that $50 be sent to the ALS Association in lieu of her Christmas gift. Such a beautiful sacrifice from someone so young! This took place in 1987; God was preparing Lenni's heart for something huge. In October of 1998 the Roseau Community was devastated when two of their very own were diagnosed with ALS just 3 days apart. Wes Blakeslee, a young engineer at Polaris Industries, was diagnosed October 23rd and Nancy Burggraf was diagnosed October 26th in 1998. Nancy was well known in the sports community with the training clinics that she held in Roseau, Thief River Falls, and the Grand Forks area. Wes was well known in the Polaris community. Both were respected and loved. The communities these two individuals touched were reeling in shock. Lenni felt compelled to do something to fight ALS and bring awareness to the disease and the Roseau ALS Walk/Run was born. Lenni's goal for that first event in July of 1999 was to raise $1,000. Lenni and the team raised over $20,000! Over the past 25 years the ALS Fundraising Team has raised over $2 million; all from the heart of a young girl who was determined to Make a Difference.

This year's event is in honor of the following currently suffering with ALS: Joshua Proulx, Bea Kruse and Norm Opdahl. The event is in memory of the following who have suffered and died from ALS: Edwin Anderson, Eldon (Eldy)Anderson, Wendy Blais, Wes Blakeslee, Nancy Burggraf, Margie Douglas, Francine Fish, Abe Foss, Dorothy Didrikson Grotte, Mavis Johnson, Janet Jensen, Sylvia Jensen, Bob Kauppila, Ray Carlson, Kris Jenson, Jeffrey Bruha, Annette Bruggeman, Dale Hillstead, Lynn Sabourin, Evangeline (Vany)Larson, Clifford Nordine, Richard (Dick)Novacek, Marlow Martin, Melvin Mortensen, Silvia Raymond, Larry Rislov, Jack Ritteman, Wayne Hites,Chad Schmitz, Ellen Smith, Delsie Thiessen, Orville Dybedahl, Danny Johnson, Father Don Braukmann, Bill Sindelir, Mark Olson, Sheldon Peterson and Barb Jenson.

Please join the Roseau ALS Walk/run July 20th for a morning of celebration and fun to fight for a cure for ALS. Registration forms have been distributed to many local businesses, or call Connie Berg at 218-242-0803. 

"Never Surrender!"


Linny Billberg 
Wes Blakeslee 
 Linny Billberg Wes Blakeslee 
Nancy Burggraf Roseau First Walk Run
Nancy Burggraf Roseau's First Walk Run