ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — It is St. Patrick’s Day weekend, and some were out celebrating with a 5K.

Runners laced up their sneakers for the annual “Shamrock Beer Run” on Saturday, and it is safe to say that folks did not let the cold keep them from running for a great cause.

There was over 600 runners, 200 more runners than last year. They were making dreams come true for sick young adults across the country.

“It’s just such a treat to see all these people out here supporting these young adults fighting cancer and their families,” said Joe Thompson, Nik’s Wish recipient and Alabama Angel.

Thompson said that he came all the way from Huntsville, Alabama to help celebrate St. Patrick’s Day weekend at the 7th Annual “Shamrock 5K Beer Run.” Nik’s Wish is for young adults aged 18-24 who are fighting cancer across the nation.

“Making it possible to do what we do, right,” Thompson said. “I mean, that’s how you make the magic happen.”

Thompson was diagnosed with DIPG last year, a form of brain cancer. His wish is to go to the Kentucky Derby in May. He said that he was happy to meet some of the people that made his wish possible.

“Just to have that sense of relief for a moment, to feel like we are getting away from cancer,” Thompson said.

Kelli Ritschell Boehle, founder of The Nikolas Ritschell Foundation, said that they have made over 300 precious moments of joy nationwide.

“That is what we want for our cancer patients when we take them on a wish,” Boehle said. “We want them to be silly, we want them to be happy, we want them to have a good time. So, you know, what this is fantastic, just what it means to get a Nik’s Wish is right here, right now to create some fun memories with people you love.”

Runners not only ran for a good cause, but got a medal and a St. Patrick’s Day party. There was a silent auction, music, games, 50-foot shillelagh stick and, of course, beer to warm up.

Thompson said he hopes that he can help others get their wish too.

“I think it is really important so we can get the funding we need to grant the wishing, and the wishes, what we do with that, it is able to help these young kids, not only the young adults like me, but the families,” he said.

Nik’s Wish Foundation is always accepting donations or volunteers.