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Posted on November 29, 2013 | 5:22 p.m.

Santa Barbara Santa Claus Run Returning to Benefit Pediatric Cancer Research

Source: Leon Lewandowski for the Santa Claus Run

Apparently, Santa helps children even before Christmas Eve in Santa Barbara. Jose Gonzalez, head of SantaBarbaraActionPro.com, a marathon runner, triathlete and coach, is the brainchild of this year’s second annual Santa Barbara Santa Claus Run set for Dec. 8 in support of pediatric cancer research.

“I had been wanting to put something together like this in our community for awhile. Last year I finally got it off the ground with 300 Santas running for a good cause,” Gonzalez said. “It’s all about helping kids, and who helps kids more than Santa?”

The Cancer Center of Santa Barbara is the benefactor of the race’s proceeds, earmarked specifically for pediatric cancer research.

The race will start at 8 a.m. Dec. 8 and will finish at La Cumbre Plaza in Santa Barbara (rain or shine). Runners can register by clicking here. Late registration will be available from 1 to 4 p.m. Dec. 7 at the Guest Services office in La Cumbre Plaza Mall, in the building behind Starbucks halfway between Macy's and Sears (closest parking is Lot P4).

All participants will receive a race T-shirt as well as a Santa hat and a finishing medal. There will not only be a 5k but also a children's one-mile fun-run.

It’s encouraged that runners wear full Santa apparel. That’s right, runners are expected to run wearing the garb of St. Nick himself. And, if you do, there are cash prizes for the top three best Santa costumes.

Learn more about the second annual Santa Barbara Santa Run or get your questions answered by clicking here. You can also contact Gonzalez at [email protected] or 805.845.0119.

— Leon Lewandowski represents the Santa Claus Run.

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