Fear the Turtle, Find a Cure Autism Speaks U 5K Run/3K Walk Presented by Sigma Phi Epsilon April 16, 2011 at the Comcast Center Parking Lot, College Park, MD

Washington, DC, January 18, 2011 --(PR.com)-- Autism Speaks, North America’s largest autism science and advocacy organization, today announced that the 3rd annual University of Maryland’s Fear the Turtle, Find a Cure Autism Speaks U 5K fundraising and awareness event will take place on April 16, 2011 at The Comcast Center Parking Lot, College Park, MD. All event proceeds will support Autism Speaks’ work, both locally and nationally, to increase awareness about the growing autism health crisis, fund innovative autism research and family services, and advocate for the needs of individuals with autism and their families in College Park and beyond. Autism spectrum disorder is now diagnosed in 1 in every 110 children, including 1 in 70 boys, making it the fastest-growing serious developmental disability in the U.S.

The Fear the Turtle, Find a Cure Autism Speaks U 5K Race and 3K Walk presented by Sigma Phi Epsilon is an Autism Speaks U event, raising almost $50,000 since started in 2009 to support autism research, awareness and advocacy.

Fear the Turtle, Find a Cure Autism Speaks U 5K is a unique fundraising event that offers a safe and fun day for families impacted by autism. The day includes a 5K race, 3K walk, and family-friendly activities. Check-in for the event begins promptly at 9AM outside the Comcast Center. The race will begin at 10AM, and awards will be given to the top male and female finishers in the 5K race. Refreshments will be provided, as well. This year the committee welcomes Honorary Chair, Coach Gary Williams, and Emcee Johnny Holliday to the event.

“Thanks to tremendous community support and the work of our wonderful volunteers, our Fear the Turtle, Find a Cure Autism Speaks U 5K event has grown each year, and we expect to expand the ranks of both participants and donors in 2011,” said Jordan Adler. “In addition to raising funds and awareness, the 5K run, 3K walk is a chance for families to come together and enjoy a day of laughter, hope and community. Working together, we are making great strides toward improving the lives of people with autism and their families.”

Autism Speaks U is a national program designed to guide college students all across America through the development of awareness, advocacy, and fundraising events to benefit Autism Speaks. Today, students from more than 75 schools across America are part of the national program.

Sigma Phi Epsilon’s Beta Chapter at the University of Maryland has been dedicated to the Fear the Turtle, Find a Cure Autism Speaks U 5K since its beginning. Since their founding, Sigma Phi Epsilon has been helping young men throughout the country make the most of their college experience. The Beta Chapter’s commitment to service by hosting this annual event for Autism Speaks U has helped bring the community together by uniting students, faculty, friends and family in a common cause- to cure autism.

For more information about the 3rd Annual Fear the Turtle, Find a Cure Autism Speaks U 5K Run / 3K walk presented by Sigma Phi Epsilon, please visit: http://AutismSpeaks.org/U/UMD, or contact Jordan Adler: Jordan.Adler@yahoo.com

About Autism
Autism is a complex neurobiological disorder that inhibits a person's ability to communicate and develop social relationships, and is often accompanied by behavioral challenges. Autism spectrum disorders are diagnosed in one in 110 children in the United States, affecting four times as many boys as girls. The prevalence of autism increased 57 percent from 2002 to 2006. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have called autism a national public health crisis whose cause and cure remain unknown.

About Autism Speaks
Autism Speaks is North America’s largest autism science and advocacy organization. Since its inception in 2005, Autism Speaks has made enormous strides, committing over $142.5 million to research through 2014 and developing innovative new resources for families. The organization is dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. In addition to funding research, Autism Speaks has created resources and programs including the Autism Speaks Autism Treatment Network, Autism Speaks’ Autism Genetic Resource Exchange and several other scientific and clinical programs. Notable awareness initiatives include the establishment of the annual United Nations-sanctioned World Autism Awareness Day on April 2, which Autism Speaks celebrates through its Light it Up Blue initiative. Also, Autism Speaks award-winning “Learn the Signs” campaign with the Ad Council has received over $249 million in donated media. Autism Speaks’ family resources include the Autism Video Glossary, a 100 Day Kit for newly-diagnosed families, a School Community Tool Kit and a community grant program. Autism Speaks has played a critical role in securing federal legislation to advance the government’s response to autism, and has successfully advocated for insurance reform to cover behavioral treatments in 23 states thus far, with bills pending in an additional 14 states. Each year Walk Now for Autism Speaks events are held in more than 80 cities across North America. To learn more about Autism Speaks, please visit: www.AutismSpeaks.org

Autism Speaks National Capital Area
Christina Markish
202 955 3111