Public invited to HealthPlus Brooksie Way Kickoff

 The HealthPlus Brooksie Way kicks off 2014 by unveiling a new logo, showing the newly-modified half marathon course and presenting nearly $9,000 in Brooksie Way Minigrants to various community organizations.

This all happens at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 3, at the OU Recreation Center on the campus of Oakland University in Rochester. The public is encouraged to attend.

“Each year The HealthPlus Brooksie Way gets more robust,” Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson said. “I hope the public comes out to see the new logo that will adorn our race shirts and the medals that half marathon finishers will receive. Last year we had 6,100 participants. Our race registrations are already ahead of where we were last year at this time.”

The first 100 people who show up at the kickoff will receive a free limited-edition Brooksie Way t-shirt with the new logo. HealthPlus is giving away a free t-shirt to the first 100 people who show their HealthPlus insurance card and the first 100 HealthPlus members who sign up for the race during the kickoff will save $20 off the race registration, said race director Deb Kiertzner.

Special race applications will be available May 3 that gives runners and walkers a $10 discount on race registration. The HealthPlus discount and the Brooksie Way discount cannot be combined. HealthPlus is also sponsoring a free Slim U Boot Camp at 11 a.m. – weather permitting – featuring Pete Thomas, NBC’s most successful Biggest Loser and a HealthPlus health spokesman.

The HealthPlus Brooksie Way, now in its seventh year and set for Sept. 28, is named in memory of Brooks Stuart Patterson, a young father and the son of the county executive who died in 2007. It has become one of the most popular regional fall half marathons. The 2013 race attracted 6,100 runners and walkers, including participants from 17 states and five countries. The course begins and ends at the Meadow Brook Music Festival on the campus of Oakland University and includes parts of the Clinton River and Paint Creek trails, Rochester Hills and downtown Rochester.

Runners and walkers who have participated in past HealthPlus Brooksie Way races will note a course modification, which now takes them on Dutton Road. The change was made necessary because Tienken Road is not available because of ongoing construction.

Also during the kickoff, nine community organizations will receive checks for their projects from The Brooksie Way Minigrant program. The minigrants have returned more than $100,000 to support local health and fitness activities in Oakland County. The grants are awarded three times a year.

Online registration at saves half marathon runners and walkers off the $75 entry fee charged to those who register on the eve of the Sept. 28 race. Entrants for the 10K and 5K races will also realize significant savings by registering early. Participants can also register online for the popular Team Challenge – which sold out last year – and celebrate after the race in the exclusive Team Challenge tent.

New this year the HealthPlus Brooksie Way is partnering with the Great Lakes Bay Regional Marathon in Midland. Entrants can save $10 off the current race registration for both races using a coupon code that will be announced next week.

The popular Kid’s Race – sponsored by Fifth Third bank – is set for Sept. 27, the day before the bigger races. Kroger, the official half marathon sponsor, will soon offer race applications in all Michigan stores.

For additional information, visit

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