Health department planning Tour de Seven in Golconda

Helping residents of Southern Illinois stay healthy is a primary focus of Southern Seven Health Department.

One of the many ways this is done is through the department’s annual Tour de Seven – Fall into Fitness 5K Run/Walk.  

Now in its sixth year, the Tour de Seven is scheduled Saturday, Sept. 18, in Golconda, during the town’s annual Shrimp Festival.  

Tour de Seven is planned each year in one of the seven counties served by Southern Seven Health Department. Last year’s event was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Pope County Hometown Heroes, a student led civics organization that is based in peer mentoring.  

The purpose of Hometown Heroes is to leave a positive impact on their school and community through annual projects, and to raise up strong leaders for the future.    

“The Tour de Seven is not just a race, but a chance to help improve the communities we serve,” said Natalie Sawyer, Southern Seven Health Department’s education director. 

“Each year we select a group that is eager to meet the needs of its residents. Hometown Heroes are young people striving to make a difference.”

Joining in the event this year is Arrowleaf, a local non-profit community service agency, to provide participant support and be on hand with information about their services.  

“Arrowleaf has always been a wonderful partner to the health department and this helps all of us to reach our goals and have a bigger impact on the community,” Sawyer said.

Many Pope County businesses have donated items for the 5K and will be recognized as a sponsor of the event.  Southern Seven Health Department thanks them for their support.  Donations will be accepted through Aug. 20.

The race course, which begins at Golden Circle in Golconda, is paved, wheelchair and stroller accessible with no big hills and has only a few small inclines.  Pets on a leash are welcome. And hydration/first aid stations will be available. 

Early registration for the Tour de Seven ends Sept. 3.  Entry fee is $25 and includes a participant t-shirt.  Late registration is $30 with t-shirt not guaranteed.  Day of event registration begins at 7 a.m., followed by the race at 8:00 a.m.  

For those wanting a shorter route, a 1-mile Shrimp Crawl is scheduled to start at 8:30 a.m. Entry is free. T-shirts can be purchased for $10 by those who register by Sept. 3. 

To register, or for more information about the Tour de Seven, contact Bobi Cavins at 618-634-2297, extension 9123 or  

For more information, visit  or To help support the event, contact Natalie L. Sawyer at 618-634-2297, extension 9136, or

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158

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