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Alzheimer's walk raises money in Riverhead

Storefronts on Main Street in Riverhead.

Storefronts on Main Street in Riverhead. Credit: Erin Geismar, 2011

The Long Island Alzheimer’s Resource Center will hold a Sept. 7 fundraising walk at Old Bethpage Village, but an East End chapter of the group held its own walk during the weekend in downtown Riverhead, starting by cutting a symbolic ribbon at Grangebel Park on the Peconic River and ending up at the aquarium on East Main Street.

The group, which provides aid to Alzheimer’s disease patients and their families, has been holding fundraising walks for a decade. It held its first East End walk in Southampton after a branch office was opened there, and the location was moved last year to Riverhead, according to center spokesman Hank Russell. About 200 people took part in last year’s walk, and raised $38,000 in pledges, exceeding their goal of $25,000.

The Bethpage event is the group’s largest. “They get 10 times the number of people in Riverhead,” Russell said.

A third walk is planned for Westhampton Beach on Oct. 26.

The Resource Center, based in Bay Shore, estimates that 60,000 people on Long Island suffer from Alzheimer’s.

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