Giving Back

Athletes of All Abilities to Participate in 5th Annual Greta’s Run in Westfield April 22

People of all abilities will participate in the 5th Annual Greta's Run this month. Credits: Jackie Lieberman
People of all abilities will participate in the 5th Annual Greta's Run this month. Credits: Jackie Lieberman

WESTFIELD, NJ — The fifth annual Greta’s Run 5K will be held on April 22 at Roosevelt Intermediate School at 11 a.m. The 5K is a fundraiser for participants of all ages and abilities to help raise money for people with special and adaptive needs in the Westfield area.

The event is held in memory of Greta Schoenemann, a Westfield High School student who died in September 2002 after a large tree branch fell on her during lunch. Schoenemann’s childhood friends, Jayne Ruotolo and Ben Nanna, founded Greta's Run in 2013 to continue the charity work Greta was doing for people with special needs.

In honor of Schoenemann’s sister Elise, who has cerebral palsy, all proceeds from Greta’s Run benefit people with special and adaptive needs through the Challenged Athletes Foundation and the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation in Westfield.

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“It’s how we remember our friend, bring our community together, raise money for people with special and adaptive needs and give these folks an event to compete in, too,” Ben Nanna, co-founder and director of the race, said.

Greta’s Run aims to be accessible. The event encourages everyone to walk, run or roll to the finish line to help raise money and awareness.The 5K is classified as a 501c3 volunteer-led nonprofit.

In the past, participants have traveled from all over the country to take part in Greta’s Run. There will be awards and prizes for those who participate. Volunteers will be present for course assistance if needed.

“It’s a hometown-feeling race, with over 1,000 of our friends, family and neighbors supporting the cause,” Nana said. “It's been one of the largest 5Ks in the area since the first year, which is an incredible testament to Greta’s legacy and the supportive community we've grown up in.”

To register for the 5K or to make a donation, visit the Greta Run website. The registration fee is $30.


Westfield Public Schools

Challenged Athletes Foundation

Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation

Westfield Athletics



BMW of Bloomfield


CrossFit Garwood

Fit Body Boot Camp

Gold Medal Fitness

Parisi Speed School

Wheel House Elite Cycle Studio



Jersey Mike's of Westfield

Tapinto Westfield

The Anderson Family

Washington Elementary School 5th Graders



16 Prospect Wine Bar & Bistro

Bentley Laboratories

Ed & Mary Smith

Elegant Homes NJ

Eurosport of Westfield

Guillotine Salon & Spa

Hilltop Bicycles

Hot Yoga Revolution

Spector Foerst & Associates

Stephanie Siudut Photography

The Fallig Family

The Fortino Family

The Juice House

The Mavins Group

The Mistretta Family

The River & Rail Cantina

The Schoenemann Family

The Union Pork Store

The Vickers Family

UBS Financial Services Inc.

Westfield Boosters

Westfield Health & Rehabilitation

Westfield Pediatric Dental Group

Publick House

BMW of Springfield

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