Red Run (Walking, too) to Fight Child Sex Trafficking Saturday in Algonquin

A press release from


The Red Run's entry in the Algonquin Founders' Day Parade.  Photo Credit:  First Electric Newspaper.

The Red Run’s entry in the Algonquin Founders’ Day Parade. Photo Credit: First Electric Newspaper.

ALGONQUIN—Local moms Cortina Nystad and Kristen Guerrieri know people might look twice as they race through downtown Algonquin in scarlet dresses and worn running shoes.

In fact, they hope you will notice their unorthodox running gear:

they’re running to save the lives of little girls at risk of sex trafficking

Nystad and Guerrieri first donned their crimson best and took to the street to get the message out after learning about two little girls from southeast Asia—each clad in a red dress—who were sold into the sex trade.

The young mothers’ weekly runs down Route 62 eventually led to the development of The Red Run 5K Run/Walk, which last year hosted more than 500 area residents.

Registration is now open for the second Red Run 5K Run/Walk, which will be held Aug. 10 at Presidential Park in Algonquin.

“Human trafficking is happening in the suburbs. It is our job as a community to get educated and know what signs to look for,” Guerrieri said.

“Be a nosy neighbor. If you see something odd, report it.”

This year’s USATF-certified race will benefit the Dreamcatcher Foundation, a survivor-founded, survivor-led and focused organization in Chicago.

Brenda Myers-Powell, Co-Founder, will be the featured speaker at the event.

Additional beneficiaries include the Salvation Army PROMISE (Anne’s House), a local residential program that provides aftercare for victims and Love146, an organization that provides prevention and aftercare solutions internationally.

Prizes will be awarded for the top male and female finishers and for the top three finishers in each age category.

“Last year was a phenomenal event,” participant Jeff Close said. “

The Red Run kept the focus on the cause. That’s what drew me and that’s why I’ll keep coming back.”

2012 Red Dress Runners

2012 Red Runners

This year’s event will feature:

  • Raffle prizes (including Chicago Cubs rooftop tickets, Six Flags, and Chicago Improv)
  • Vendors that support victims and survivors of human trafficking, including Freedom Firm and WAR Chest Boutique, a Naperville business supporting Women At Risk
  • Books for sale, including Wheaton resident Shayne Moore’s “Refuse to Do Nothing” and Nita Belles’ “In Our Backyard”
  • Inflatable bounce house
  • Complimentary Starbucks fair trade coffee
  • Exclusive post-race breakfast at Port Edward Restaurant ($15 per person), with a percentage of the proceeds benefiting the Red Run

This event is sponsored in part by McHenry-based Glory Maintenance Services, a returning platinum supporter of the event.

“We believe we can change the world in big ways and by doing so we can make our neighborhoods a better place to live,” said owner Don Jordan.

“We care so deeply we want to join the efforts in Running Out Trafficking!”

To register, visit

Pre-registration is $30 for runners and $25 for walkers.

Registration fees increase by $10 on race day.

For more information or to learn about sponsorship opportunities, contact Kristen Guerrieri at

Concerned citizens can call (888) 373-7888 or text “INFO” or “HELP” to befree (233733).

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