In two weeks, a five-year-old patient at Alder Hey from St Helens will be the guest of honour at the 20th staging of the BTR Liverpool Santa Dash.
The festive spectacular will take place on Sunday, December 3, 2023, beginning at 9.30 a.m. at Pier Head in Liverpool. The event is widely regarded as the city’s official start to the festive season.
For the annual event, thousands of red, blue, and mini Santas will transform the iconic, world-famous waterfront into a sea.
The official event charity partner for the BTR Liverpool Santa Dash 2023 is Alder Hey Children’s Charity. And there is still time to get involved and support the incredible work of the charity.
The funds raised by Alder Hey will be used to support its mission of transforming young lives through cutting-edge equipment, facilities, and groundbreaking medical research.
The first Liverpool Santa Dash was held in 2004, and it is now regarded as the UK’s largest festive 5K fun run.
Last year, 5,500 daring Santas competed in the day’s two festive fun run events: the main Santa Dash (5K) and the 1K Mini Dash.
4,000 Santas have already signed up with only two weeks to go. Organisers hope to outperform last year’s total in the first of two celebratory years.
Blue spots are now sold out. Entries will be accepted at the St Johns Shopping Centre pop-up shop until Saturday, December 2nd.
Patient at Alder Hey Lincoln is five years old and has had open-heart surgery at Liverpool’s world-class children’s hospital. His contagious enthusiasm and positivity have earned him the honour of representing the charity at this year’s Liverpool Santa Dash.
Lincoln will attend the event with his family, including his mother Tanya, father Mathew, and brothers Deacon, Mac, and Jaxon. He will compete in the 1K Mini Dash, accompanied by Ader Hey Mascot Oli, the elephant who will compete in the main dash.
Santas can help the charity by raising funds or making a one-time donation. The Santa Dash fundraising campaign for 2023 has already surpassed £4,000 in donations.
Santa Dash charity spots are still available; for more information, visit the website here.
Talking about Lincoln’s experiences with Alder Hey, Mum Tanya said:
“Lincoln has a complex Congenital Heart Defect and Heterotaxy Syndrome RAI and has been under Alder Hey’s care from day one. We’ve had an amazing experience with Alder Hey, especially the cardiac team and ward staff who have looked after him during his numerous stays and appointments so far. We can’t thank them enough for the time they have given us with him, with hopefully many more to come.
“Lincoln is just the happiest boy and is always smiling. He’s also very cheeky, loving, and caring, with an amazing personality. He is finally in a good place – and even excited when he knows he’s coming to Alder Hey again.”
The goal of Alder Hey Children’s Charity is to provide a fun and positive experience for families, often during difficult times, by raising funds for innovative projects and creative activities. The charity is proud to have pioneered life-saving treatments and provided comfort to young patients and their families thanks to generous donations.
Adam Dixon, Running and Challenge Manager at Alder Hey Children’s Charity, added:
“We are so excited to once again be the Official Charity Partner for the BTR Liverpool Santa Dash. We always look forward to the event as it really is the start of Christmas and gets us all in the festive spirit – and our mascot Oli will also be on the start line! Alder Hey is close to the heart of many Santa Dash participants with most local families having a connection to our hospital. Funds raised will help benefit the 330,000 patients and families we treat at Alder Hey every single year.”
Santa Dash participants or supporters can fundraise or make a donation on the Alder Hey Liverpool Santa Dash official giving page at https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/santadashah23
BTR Race Director Alan Rothwell created the BTR Liverpool Santa Dash. Over the past two decades, the event has continued to evolve.
Organizers added a 1K Mini Dash for youngsters aged 12 and under to the day in 2007, and introduced blue Santa suits in 2010 due to public demand. The 5K route was changed in 2018 to include Royal Albert Dock Liverpool after the Churchill Flyover in Liverpool city centre was demolished.
The 5K route starts from Pier Head Liverpool, passing through the Grade I Listed Royal Albert Dock Liverpool estate, winding its way through the city centre, before a grandstand finish line featuring stilt-walking festive characters and’real’ snow outside Liverpool Town Hall.
The Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Mary Rasmussen, officially opened the pop-up shop. The Lord Mayor will be cheering on Santas on the day.
The 1K Mini Dash is for youngsters aged 12 and under. It starts at approximately 11am on Castle Street, once all the Santas in the main dash have cleared the course. The youngsters follow a similar city centre route before crossing the finish line outside Liverpool Town Hall.
The sights and sounds of Liverpool drumming band Katumba will greet the Santa Dash and Mini Dash participants as they pass Moorfields Train Station on Dale Street.
The Santa Dash pop-up shop in St Johns Shopping Centre is open every day through to Saturday 2 December for Santa suit collection, registration, and stocking of official BTR Liverpool Santa Dash merchandise.
The shop is located on the lower level of St Johns Shopping Centre, near the Matalan Bridge and Post Office. Opening times are Monday to Saturday from 9.30am to 5pm, and Sunday between 11am and 4pm.
Radio City is the official event media partner. Leanne and Scott from the Radio City Breakfast Show are supporting the event. Leanne will take part in the main Santa Dash.
Arriva North West is supporting the event for the sixth time with free bus travel across Merseyside on Santa Dash Day. To claim complimentary bus travel to or from the city centre, Santas must be wearing their Santa suit and race number on the morning, or their Santa suit and finishers’ medal when travelling home. There is no cut-off time to travel after the event.
BTR Liverpool is the leading independent organisation for creating, managing, and delivering headline-running events across the Liverpool City Region. Its extensive portfolio covers various distances across different terrains, all with an ongoing commitment to sustainability.
The BTR event calendar also includes the BTR Tour of Merseyside, the BTR Liverpool Half Marathon, and the BTR Mersey Tunnel 10K.
The Liverpool Santa Dash entry fee covers all costs to organise and deliver the event, including road closures, safety measures, Santa suits, medals, goody bags, and entertainment.