Thousands of walkers and runners turn out for Healthplus Brooksie Way Race

ROCHESTER (WXYZ) - More than 6,000 runners were expected to turn out for the HealthPlus Brooksie Way races in Rochester.

Racers completed either a 10k or 5k course starting at 8:00 am, Sunday.

The Brooksie Way Half Marathon is one of Oakland County's premier q‚Äčuality of life events. County Executive L. Brooks Patterson began the Brooksie Way races to promote Oakland County and encourage people to become more physically active.

Support from HealthPlus of Michigan, the presenting sponsor for the Brooksie Way Half Marathon, helps make the event and its related activities possible.

Race proceeds support programs that encourage healthy and active lifestyle and are distributed through Brooksie Way MiniGrants.  In little more than a year, Brooksie Way Minigrants have put more than $50,000 back into Oakland County communities, touching thousands of lives along the way. 

The Brooksie Way is a 501(c)(3) non-profit formed in 2011.  Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent provided by State and Federal law.

Each year, race weekend kicks-off with the Brooksie Way Fitness Expo held on the campus of Oakland University.  The expo takes a holistic approach with the slogan Body Mind Soul to reflect the vast array of vendors from different areas of health, fitness and wellness. 

Runners can find information and products from vendors from sports and nutrition retailers, athletic apparel, medical professionals and various training programs, along with information about cross-training sports such as yoga, cycling, roller blading, life coaching, weight control, traveling, and stress relief.

Runners and walkers alike are invited to participate in all the races; and a specially-designed training program is available to help get you in shape whether you're a first-timer or race veteran.

The first annual race was held in October 2008 and was named in honor of the late Brooks Stuart Patterson, Mr. Patterson's son.

Brooksie, as he was known to his family and friends, died in 2007 after a tragic snowmobile accident.

Ironically, his death came just days after his father's State of the County address in which plans were announced for a county-sponsored half marathon as part of a wellness initiative for county residents.

A businessman, entrepreneur, husband and father, Brooksie left behind a wife and three children.
Brooks Stuart Patterson's lasting legacy is the exuberance with which he lived his life, the passion he had for family and friends and his dreams for the future.

That's why we named the race in his memory, "The Brooksie Way."

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