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Race for Riley could draw more than 1,000 to Serenbe

The 10th Annual Race for Riley fundraiser for the Joseph Sams School in Fayetteville will be held April 26 at Serenbe in south Fulton County. The annual fundraiser customarily attracts more than 1,000 participants and visitors from across metro Atlanta.

The race and activities associated with the fundraiser are named for Riley Peek, who at age 2 was diagnosed with mitochondrial disease. This systemic condition causes her to be non-verbal, have abnormal brain function, gastrointestinal problems, muscle failure and delayed development.

The fundraiser was initiated by her mom, Waynette Peek, and quickly grew to a premier event that attracts participants from across metro Atlanta.

The Serenbe community is located in the Chattahoochee Hills in south Fulton County. Parking for the event will be available at 10685 Hutcheson Ferry Road. As usual, volunteers will be at the site to direct participants and visitors.

The April 26 event features a 5K run/walk, through the growing Serenbe community and a bike ride along the rolling hills of the largely rural city of Chattahoochee Hills. The event will also include music, a magician for he kids and a live auction with items such as an autographed guitar from country music artist Eric Church, Chick-fil-A for a year, pottery made by Joseph Sams students, Atlanta Braves tickets, an Apple electronics product and more.

The annual fundraiser will be held rain or shine, with the 5K run/walk beginning at 8:30 a.m. followed by a 1-mile run at 9:15 a.m. and the Tot Trot at 9:30 a.m. The bike ride will begin at 10 a.m.

The annual Race for Riley commonly draws more than 1,000 participants, and this year should be no exception.

Participants are encouraged to come early to register the day of the event or to pick up and early packet on April 26 between 4-7 p.m. at 10685 Hutcheson Ferry Road. Early registration, which is strongly encouraged, can be done at prior to April 20.

The recipient of the fundraiser is Riley’s school, the Joseph Sams in Fayetteville School for special needs students.

“Our goal is to improve the lives of the children that attend the school,” Waynette said. “From the first day that Riley walked into the her classroom, her quality of life and our peace of mind improved because we had found a safe, loving learning environment for our daughter. Having a place like JSS is a blessing that cannot be adequately described.”

A pre-event fundraiser will be held at Oz Pizza in downtown Fairburn on April 21 from 5-10 p.m. where 20 percent of the proceeds from dine-in and carry-out items will go to the fundraiser.

For more information on the race and for details on entry fees visit or contact the Joseph Sams Schools at 770-461-5894 or email


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