Join St. Mary’s Annual Big Hearts Walk-a-Thon this Sunday to help fundraise for critically ill children

st mary's
St. Mary’s Big Hearts Walk-a-Thon fills up Crocheron Park with walkers and volunteers each year.
Photo courtesy of St. Mary’s

The 18th annual Big Hearts Walk for St. Mary’s Kids is expected to bring hundreds of community members to Crocheron Park in Bayside this Sunday. 

The annual fundraising event, which cultivates support for critically ill children who rely on St. Mary’s care, was originally scheduled for May 5. But due to poor weather, it was rescheduled for June 2. 

Following the walk, there will be fun activities for all ages, including carnival games, arts and crafts, face painting, raffles and performances by a magician. 

Each year, the event also honors two community members who have made notable contributions to St. Mary’s. Maureen Folan, founder of The Maureen Folan Real Estate Group, and Bridget Klein, Senior Therapeutic Activities Assistant for the Healing Arts and Therapeutic Recreation program at St. Mary’s were selected this year for their longtime support. 

Adults can register for the walk on-site for $25 and children for $5 starting at 9 a.m. Participants can also register online beforehand up until 3 p.m. on Friday. The walk is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. and will kick off the family fun day. 

St. Mary’s is close to reaching its fundraising goal of $150,000 after over a thousand individuals donated to the cause. Last year, it raised $125,000, and in 2022, it raised $98,000 from the annual walk-a-thon.

The system is one of the handful across the country dedicated to providing specialized care to children with special needs and life-limiting conditions.