I want to start a Run for our sons here in Toledo Ohio, i am asking anyone for advice how i can get this started. I have never set anything up like this before and i need all the advice i can get. so if anyone could please help me I would appreciate it.



Thanks,
Nicole

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Hi Nicole,

Starting a new race, no matter the distance, is a time consuming thing to do alone. It is best done with a group or committee who can help break up the responsibilities. Your first priority will be to gather a team to help you.

Begin by choosing responsible, well connected and motivated people who are organized and goal oriented. Business leaders are great to have on board as they have influence with others in the community. The members of the committee can take on individual task including soliciting businesses for donations and other forms of support. Your goal should be raise enough money or have donations to cover administrative costs (insurance, printing and mailings), shirts, water and sport drinks and post race food. If these items are covered then your race fees will go to the fund raiser. A race needs volunteers for registrations, both before the race and on race day, people to guide runners and monitor traffic and some to man "water stations". A member of your committee could be assigned to finding help. Maybe a church group or scouting organization can be persuaded to help out with these tasks. Someone needs to contact local public safety and municipal agencies to find out the requirements for using streets, closing streets during the event and other considerations such as insurance requirements and ordinances. Someone will time the runners and hiring a company to do this comes out of your profits. Can you find a knowledgeable person to man the finish and keep track of runners as they crowd a finish line? Will you have cash awards for winners or raffles for entrants? Someone will need to be responsible for obtaining these "perks" provided you are looking at these as a way to attract runners. Businesses might provide gift certificates instead of donations and these can be used as awards or raffles. After the event is held you will need to send thank you letters to many people. Help here is also a good idea. Runners like certified courses. Someone will need to find out what is needed to certify your course and determine the fees and can the course be permanently marked so you don't have to go through this every year.

If you have an experienced Race Director willing to help this is a huge asset as they should understand scheduling, organizing volunteers and all the components needed to hold a successful event. Consider speaking with members of a local running club like the Toledo Road Runners (http://www.toledoroadrunners.org/index.php). They can tell you what dates might be good for a race that won't conflict with ongoing local and regional races. The club may know someone willing to join your committee or help guide you. Local running shops are another great resource and might be able to help you organize an event or advertise it in their shop and/or on their website.

One formula that works well and is more profitable is to combine a run with a walk-a-thon. You could use the same route starting the runners first to avoid congestion and keep the same volunteers along the route. The idea is to have a race for one distance, say 5K, and a walk of a slightly shorter distance, maybe 2 or 2.5 miles. Many runners are willing to pay a typical entry fee to race, yet are not interested in raising additional money. Non-runners are more inclined to seek pledges and raise money for a walk. By adding a walk you are able to enlist more people who might be intimidated by a race, but are happy to walk.

Another thought is to make your event unique. There are so many 5K races during the running season. Consider a slightly different distance to attract people looking for a change. An 8K is about 5 miles, 4 mile races are different as are 7 miles.

I hope these ideas are what you were looking for and you are able to hold an event. People are willing to help, you have to find them and ask.

Best of luck!

Brian Denger
Brian thank you so much for your advice, i will admit i didnt think it would be that much but it is. I have gotton ahold of a few people here in toledo and at the MDA clinic in toledo but im still waiting to hear back from them. But again thank you so much.


Nicole
Hello Nicole I was going to suggest a Walk-A-Thon at first to start off with, much easier to organize like to be held in a Mall....then I noticed Brian suggested a Walk-A-Thon in his reply!!!!

Nicole said:
Brian thank you so much for your advice, i will admit i didnt think it would be that much but it is. I have gotton ahold of a few people here in toledo and at the MDA clinic in toledo but im still waiting to hear back from them. But again thank you so much.


Nicole
Hey, Nicole why not just contact Pat and ask her why can't PPMD do a Run For Our Sons in Toledo and maybe other states too, as not many families can afford to travel to just one site for this event!

Cheryl Markey said:
Hello Nicole I was going to suggest a Walk-A-Thon at first to start off with, much easier to organize like to be held in a Mall....then I noticed Brian suggested a Walk-A-Thon in his reply!!!!

Nicole said:
Brian thank you so much for your advice, i will admit i didnt think it would be that much but it is. I have gotton ahold of a few people here in toledo and at the MDA clinic in toledo but im still waiting to hear back from them. But again thank you so much.


Nicole
Hi Nicole,

There several different ways you can approach starting a run in Toledo, Ohio. I would be more than happy to assist you in any way I can. Please contact me at sandra@parentprojectmd.org or call me at the office 201.944.9987 so that we can discuss some of the ways you can plan a running event.

Thank you in advance for your interest in PPMD's Run For Our Sons program.
Sandra Goldman
Hi Sandra,

Thank you for reply, and yes I would still like to try to set up a Run for Our Sons in Toledo. I think its an awesome way to help raise money, And I know that there are several families who would like for it to be here in Toledo. We do not have anything that goes on here for MD except that several stores sell the shamrocks to help out and I would love for the families that do live close buy the area to have a Run close to home, simply because alot of families can not afford to travel. So if you have any ideas please share them with me.

Thank You,
Nicole

Sandra said:
Hi Nicole,

There several different ways you can approach starting a run in Toledo, Ohio. I would be more than happy to assist you in any way I can. Please contact me at sandra@parentprojectmd.org or call me at the office 201.944.9987 so that we can discuss some of the ways you can plan a running event.

Thank you in advance for your interest in PPMD's Run For Our Sons program.
Sandra Goldman

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