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Noteworthy

Help Support Southeast Florida Honor Flight At This Martin County Airport 5K Fun Run

This weekend, you can help raise funds for Southeast Florida Honor Flight's programs benefiting World War II veterans in the most fitting place possible: Martin County Airport.

The organization's second annual Run for Honor—which involves a 5K fun run through the airport and a USO-themed dinner party in an aircraft hangar—takes place Saturday, Jan. 16, at Witham Field. 

Organizers selected this setting because they considered the airport "a natural tie-in," said Todd Tucker, Honor Flight SEFL chairman of the board.

Tucker, who has been on almost every Honor Flight to Washington, D.C., out of Southeast Florida, says the opportunity too see the war memorials makes a profound difference in these veterans' lives. (Read about Stuart Magazine's trip with Honor Flight this past fall here.)

"We hear from their families long after they've passed away how much it meant to them in their final years," he said. 

The race course will be laid out throughout the operational airport, with WWII-era equipment and re-enactors dressed in military uniforms. Runners can see and hear the planes moving about at the airport, but from enough of a distance to keep everyone safe. The race starts at 4 p.m.

"It's really cool," Tucker said. "Just being out on the airport itself with planes out flying around and taxiing."

During the party that follows at 5 p.m., guests will be dressed up in WWII period-era costumes. Attendees will also be able to dine alongside a restored WWII P-51 fighter plane called "Betty Jane."

"It's very patriotic, getting to see the vintage airplanes in the hangar where the party is and also adjacent to it," Tucker said. "…It's a throwback." 

Last year, Honor Flight raised a few thousand dollars, but the hope is to continue growing the fundraising event over time so it can eventually become one of the nonprofit's largest. And Tucker expects this can become the case, based on the support Stuart has shown in the past.

"There's a very strong patriotism in the area, and that definitely shows," he said.

Tickets are $45 for the run (which includes a Dri-Fit shirt), $45 for the party, or $75 for entry to both. Dinner includes a cash bar, entertainment, and dancing.

Proceeds benefit both Southeast Florida Honor Flight and the Stuart Air Show. For more information, visit runforhonor.com