White Rock’s Parkinson’s SuperWalk will be returning next month, with the creator of the group reminding the city of how crucial it is to bring awareness to the disease and funds to help combat it.
Liz Holroyd started the White Rock Walk after going through “a really scary time” from being diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 2010.
With her husband Scott, Holroyd began participating in multiple Walks in Langley, but they wanted to create one in their own community to get the city involved in the campaign.
The full, in-person Superwalk had to be put on hold because of social distancing measures during the pandemic. After going virtual last year, the full-scale event is back this September for the first time since 2019.
Holroyd is excited to bring the walk back, in hopes of also inspiring others to think of Parkinson Society B.C. when considering donating.
“When you don’t gather in person, you don’t have the same connection. We still had significant contributions but it did drop,” she said.
Parkinson Society B.C. supports those with the disease to access resources, learn about how their lives will be altered, teach families on how to best-support their loved ones with Parkinson’s and more.
Parkinson’s Disease is the fastest growing neurological disorder, with cases constantly going up every year.
Funds raised through the campaign will help the Society continue to offer these services and support research to find a cure one day.
Although symptoms of the disease typically begin when someone is in their 60s, it is possible for it to strike early, resulting in Young-Onset Parkinson’s Disease.
“When I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2010, the first place I went was Parkinson’s Society to fully understand what was out there for me now,” Holroyd said.
“It’s a real curveball when you get diagnosed with a chronic illness and at first you don’t know, ‘Wow, what is this going to mean for me?’ You know, I was working.”
After visiting the organization, Holroyd was able to meet other people with the same illness as her, them finding a community with each other.
“It’s kind of nice because we all get it, the things that we’re feeling,” she said.
One of the few forms of treatment for those living with Parkinson’s is a drug therapy involving the medicine, Levodopa, which gets converted into dopamine in the brain. This combats the dopamine loss that is associated with Parkinson’s Disease.
For some, Levodopa works wonders, but for others, side effects may be too strong for them to see the benefits, Holroyd said.
“I had a really bad tremor on my right side and when I took the Levodopa… it took me a while to go on it because it’s a bit nerve-wrecking to go on it… When I took it, within 48 hours, it completely masked my tremor.”
Holroyd does experience some side effects from the treatment, but they are manageable, she said. Her biggest symptom of Parkinson’s is fatigue, saying that she “can fall asleep in the middle of a conversation.”
For this year’s SuperWalk, Holroyd is looking to bring attention and appreciation to care partners of those living with Parkinson’s Disease. For her own experience, Holroyd said she could not have gone through the doctor’s appointments, treatment and everything else without her husband Scott walking every step with her.
The White Rock Parkinson SuperWalk is scheduled for September 11, with registration at 9 a.m. and the walk commencing at 10 a.m. City of White Rock Coun. Dave Chesney will be the emcee of the event. To view the walking-route or donate, visit parkinson.bc.ca/superwalk and contact Liz Holroyd with any local inquiries at