Runners strip off for Christchurch

JONATHON HOWE
Last updated 12:44 23/02/2012
Jay Holtham, Travis Quin, Leila Rauzi, Yvette Morrisey, Jo Taylor and Susie Johnson
ROBERT KITCHIN/Fairfax NZ

UNDIE RUNNERS: From left, Jay Holtham, Travis Quin, Leila Rauzi, Yvette Morrisey, Jo Taylor and Susie Johnson "warm up'' for a charity run in Palmerston North on March 1.

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Organisers of a charity Undie Run in Palmerston North hope their scantily clad dash will bring smiles to the faces of Christchurch residents.

The first Undie Run was held in March last year to raise money for the Christchurch earthquake appeal after the February 22 quake.

About 50 people ran around The Square in their underwear, raising about $475, but organiser Yvette Morrissey said she hoped to double the number of runners in this year's event on March 1.

"I was real surprised at how many people were interested and how successful it was given the short timeframe I had to organise it," she said.

"It's a good cause and we had a lot of fun. This year I wanted to make it bigger and better."

She expected at least 100 people would take part in the event, with participants running or walking two laps around The Square.

She chose the theme because it had the "outrageous" factor.

"There were so many charities that were fundraising for Christchurch that I thought something a bit more lighthearted and fun would encourage people to really get behind Christchurch," Morrissey said.

"I guess it's also funny for them.

"It brings them away from all that trauma and devastation, and just have a chuckle at people in Palmy stripping down to their undies."

She said the idea of losing their clothes was also aimed at making people think about the impact the earthquake had on the Christchurch residents who lost their homes and possessions.

Undie runner Leila Rauzi was apprehensive but excited about taking part.

"I'm a bit nervous," she said.

"It's not exactly the most comfortable thing, getting down to your undies, but it's for a good cause and I'm sure we'll all have a laugh."

Participants should gather under the clock tower at 5.50pm before the 6pm run.

Collectors will accept donations from runners and the public.

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- Manawatu Standard

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