SCALE the STRAT 2009 to Bring Exciting Stair Climb Event to the Stratosphere Feb. 20-21

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On February 20 and 21, the Stratosphere Casino Hotel and Tower, the American Lung Association in Nevada (ALAN) and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield will team up to host the SCALE the STRAT 2009, an extreme stair climb event. All proceeds from this inaugural charity event will go to help prevent lung disease and promote lung health in Nevada.

“When the American Lung Association in Nevada approached us with the event, it just seemed like a natural fit. More than bringing this type of event to Las Vegas, SCALE the STRAT 2009 allows the Stratosphere to give back to the community while creating a truly unique experience for the participants,” said Arthur Keith, president and general manager of the Stratosphere Casino Hotel and Tower.

Stair climbs have become unique, signature fundraising events for the American Lung Association over the past several years. They are usually held in prominent skyscrapers and involve climbing the stairs to the top floor. Sometimes called a “vertical road race,” participants can use the event as an individual fitness target or a competitive race, with individuals and teams challenging each other to win the race competitively while raising money for the American Lung Association.

SCALE the STRAT 2009 is a 108-floor, 1,455-step vertical ascent inside of the Stratosphere Tower. Participants will race against the clock. SCALE the STRAT 2009 will be limited to the first 400 climbers to register on-line at www.scalethestrat.com. The event is not for the average couch potato or for individuals afraid of heights. Instead, the event is designed for a competitive athlete.

“We see this climb having the potential to become a national elite event that athletes will travel from all over the country to attend,” said Allison Newlon Moser, executive director of American Lung Association in Nevada. “Las Vegas is a famous destination and the Stratosphere is a famous Las Vegas icon. We have already had climbers register from Florida, Illinois, Oregon and Texas. Much as athletes from all over the world travel to marathons like Iron Man Triathlon in Hawaii or the Boston Marathon, stair climb events are becoming popular destination events for athletes, fitness buffs and corporate teams across the country.”

This climb is challenging. The first 26 flights are configured like a typical stairwell and the upper flights are suspended inside the middle of the tower with open air on each side. Individuals and teams will race for the fastest times and most fundraising dollars. This is an opportunity to compete against other individuals and teams for bragging rights while supporting a great cause.

The event is limited to the first 400 participants who are 21 years of age or older. There will be two qualifying events on Friday, February 20 starting at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. The top 50 climbers with the fastest climb times will compete on Saturday, February 21 starting at 1 p.m. for the ultimate “Climb-off.”

The registration fee for Scale the Strat 2009 is $50, and climbers are also asked to make a minimum fundraising pledge of $250 to the American Lung Association. The ALA provides online support and personal fundraising coaching to help climbers achieve their fundraising goal. Event sponsor Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield is providing online training and fitness tips. Detailed event and registration information can be found at www.scalethestrat.com .

In addition to the Stratosphere Casino Hotel and Tower and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, the sponsors for SCALE the STRAT 2009 are KTNV-TV Channel 13, United Healthcare, Lewis & Roca, Red Rock Running Company, Cashman Photo, Marshall Retail, DeLuca Liquor & Wine, R&K Concrete Cutting, American Medical Response and English Garden Florist.