Sixth Annual Ugly Sweater 5K Dash to Benefit Charleston Area Families Living with Alzheimer’s and Related Dementia

The ARK, Alzheimer’s Family Support Services to raise funds during its 6th annual Ugly Sweater 5K Dash on Dec. 2

The ARK, Alzheimer’s Family Support Services, is working to raise awareness and funds for programs to assist local families living with Alzheimer’s and related dementia with its sixth annual Ugly Sweater 5K Dash on Dec. 2, 2023, in historic downtown Summerville. This event invites participants to embrace the holiday spirit by donning their quirkiest, most festive holiday sweaters. The day promises festivities, including a costume contest, family-friendly holiday activities, and the chance to capture cherished moments with Buddy the Elf. Race proceeds directly fund vital initiatives, including memory screenings, resource fairs, educational workshops, and support groups. These services are extended to residents of Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, and Orangeburg counties, ensuring widespread access to critical assistance. Additionally, respite centers in Harleyville and Summerville benefit from the generosity of participants and supporters.

According to a recent Alzheimer's Association report, the impact of Alzheimer's is projected to rise; data shows that 95,000 people aged 65 and older live with Alzheimer's in South Carolina. Funds raised during the Ugly Sweater 5K Dash are critical in supporting essential programs to assist individuals and families affected by Alzheimer's and related dementia in the region.

“This event plays a vital role in our fundraising efforts and enables us to extend our assistance to even more families navigating the challenges of Alzheimer's and dementia caregiving,” said Peg Lahmeyer, executive director of The ARK. “We deeply appreciate the opportunity to provide much-needed support to those facing these demanding and often overwhelming responsibilities.”

Early registrants can secure a $5 discount by signing up online before October 15 using promo code ARKDASH23. The standard 5K run/walk registration fee is $35 and is available until November 30 at 5:59 PM. After this date, the price will increase to $40 on registration day. The one-mile stroll is open for $10 per person, or groups of four can register at a reduced rate of $30. Convenient drive-through registration and packet pickup will be available on December 1 from noon to 6 p.m. at 502 West 5th North Street in Summerville, located at Hwy 78 and Hickory Street.

On Dec. 2, the 5K will begin at 8:45 a.m., and the one-mile stroll begins at 9:45 a.m. at 206 Central Ave. Awards will be given out to the top three runners in each category. During the day's festivities, concessions will be available for purchase from The Rustic Muffin Food Truck.

For more information and to register for the sixth annual Ugly Sweater 5K Dash, please visit For inquiries about sponsorship opportunities, please contact Allie Suber at

Based in Summerville, The ARK is a local nonsectarian nonprofit outreach program providing hope and relief to families living with Alzheimer’s Disease or Related Dementia (ADRD). Support services include social respite care, support groups, education, caregiver consultations, resource referrals, and community development. For more information, call 843-471-1360 or visit

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