The seventh annual Ashley County Alzheimer’s Walk is only weeks away, and this year it will feature a cook-off and a bake-off with cash prize awards.

Linda Watkins said she started the Ashley County Alzheimer’s charity because she wanted to make a difference for people battling the disease and their loved ones.

Watkins said she sees to it that the benefits from the event are kept in Ashley County. During the first few years of the event, Watkins said she donated the money to state and regional charities, but decided to find a way to keep the money local.

“We are never going to raise enough money to find a cure for Alzeimher’s so I want what money we do raise to be here,” she said.

Watkins said she established a non-profit organization and can now see the money at work in the community.

“I’m not saying that the money didn’t go for the cause, but I wanted to see it, I asked for reports and I ask for details,” Watkins said.

Watkins said the charities she donated to before didn’t provide her with the details she had hoped for, and when they did, she noticed that the money wasn’t coming back to Ashley County in any form.

“Now the money stays here and helps local people,” Watkins said.

This year’s event will be 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nov. 17 at Yarborough Field.

There will be a 5K walk/run, raffles, door prizes, various booths and vendors, a chili cook-off and cinnamon roll bake-off, all to raise money for local families.

The day will include a $250 grand prize awarded in the chili cook-off and $150 grand prize awarded in the cinnamon roll bake-off.

Watkins said the grand marshal is Charles Brown of Crossett.

“We hope that everyone will come out to honor this great man and his family in his fight with Alzheimer’s,” Watkins said.

Ashley County Alzheimer’s is a 5013(c) organization that donates funds locally to residents battling alzeimer’s.

The charity is managed by board members Linda Watkins, founder; Kerstin Mondragon; Linda Corker, co-chair and treasurer; Laura Murray, secretary; and Whitney Green.

Anyone who is interested in registering as a vendor can contact Murray at 870-415-0297.

Those who are interested in registering for the cooking competitions can contact Mondragon at 870-940-0186.

For all other questions and information, contact Watkins at 870-364-5236.

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