Chilly Cheeks Virtual 5K Rollout/ Announcement!

I am so happy to announce that the planning is done; the details are set, and the 2013 Chilly Cheeks Virtual 5K is officially up and running!

The page with the link to register is right HERE.

I have been teasing it for a while now, and I am SO happy to report that I was able to put all the final pieces together and start getting the word out a little this weekend.

This is the official post to share all the info for the race. I just want you all to have one place to check for more in depth info surrounding the “what and why” of what we are doing here, and definitely to give credit where credit is due.

Ok, I’ll start with the “Why”:

First and Foremost, this is a fundraiser for charity. The American Cancer Society, to be specific.

Full disclosure: I wish I had more noble aspirations than the way I actually happened into this undertaking, but total truth be told this started out as a way to get into Broad Street. I’m talking about The Broad Street Run, an annual race that is held in Philadelphia every May. It’s one of the biggest 10 Mile Races in the Country, and it is immensely popular in this area. Last year there were over 40,000 runners that participated. It is so popular, in fact, that those 40 thousand slots sold out in the span of a day, and this year the only way to get into the race is through a lottery. That is, of course unless you agree to partner up with one of the charity partners and raise funds for them. Then you are guaranteed a spot. So armed with this knowledge, I (along with my good friends Rock and Donna) created a team with the American Cancer Society and agreed to do exactly that. More on that in a second. I have to be honest though, what started out as a way to get into a race has really snowballed into something bigger for me. The more I planned, talked, and thought about it, the more into it I got and I love the idea of being able to give back and put more good out there for the benefit of others. And to that end I started really looking to find ways to get the most out of our efforts, and that’s led to some pretty cool things happening over the past few weeks.

I’ll start with the primary beneficiary, and original intention of this fundraiser. The American Cancer Society had a very big presence in the running community through their DetermiNation program. It’s a program designed specifically for this purpose, to get athletes together and offer a sense of community while sharing the common goal of raising money for the charity and supporting each other. It’s really awesome, actually. I don’t need to elaborate here, we all know that cancer is a horrible, heartless disease that reaches far into almost everyone’s life in some way or another. If it does not touch you, odds are it touches someone you know. In my opinion, any dollars that can be raised to help work towards research to provide progress on a cure are dollars well worth the effort invested to raise them. You can learn more about the ACS Determination program HERE.

To further prove my point about really getting on board with the charitable efforts, we are also partnering up with Charity Miles, and I could not be more excited about it. Let me explain. Charity Miles is a free iPhone/android smartphone app that uses your phone’s gps to track your run/walk/bike ride. This NYC based company (Charity Miles) is dedicated to raising money to be donated to charity, at the rate of $0.25/ mile walked or run and $0.10/mile biked. They have secured corporate sponsors who are willing to donate money based on the miles run. They designed the app specifically to track everything and keep it all legit. I discovered them a few months ago and have been using the app ever since. I love it and the fact that A.) it does not cost me anything to use it and B.) even though it’s free, it still puts me in a position to raise funds for charity and make a difference. I love donating other people’s money.(ha)  I know I don’t give it full justice, but suffice it to say this is a way to leverage the running you will be out there doing anyway to generate some funds and make a real impact. You can find their main website HERE, and a FAQ page that explains how it all works HERE. We are strongly encouraging all of the Chilly Cheeks Virtual 5K participants to use it while they run the race. Instead of getting only my 3.1 miles, if we can get everybody’s 3.1 it can add up quick and make a huge difference.

So that concludes the WHY portion. Now onto the specifics of the race…or the “What” portion of the post:

It’s a virtual 5k, and basically what that means is that it’s a race without a specific location. You are free to run wherever and whenever you want. As long as you run it as some point during the specified race weekend, you’re good with us. But the rest of the details are the same. You log on and register, pay the entry fee of $25, get your bib (I’ll email you one you can print and wear the week before the event) and then run the race. Just like in traditional race, when you finish, you get a medal. (only difference is that for this race, I mail it to you since I won’t be there to put it around your neck). You also get entered into the raffle to win one of the multiple giveaways we have secured. All the profits from the race towards our charity fundraising efforts and everybody has a great time.

I do have a few thank yous, specifically to all of the sponsor companies that have very generously donated prizes that allow us to “sweeten the pot” and generate interest in the race. Rightfully so, because they really are some pretty sweet prizes. So a big thank you goes out to: GU Energy Labs, Road ID, Hydrapak, Pearl Izumi, Injinji, Pro Compression, Allied Medal Displays, and Charity Miles. In addition to the product sponsors, I also owe a big thank you to the designer of our logo, Dave Hood. He is my insanely talented brother who took what was a random idea out of my head and turned into what can safely be described as a professional, memorable logo for our bibs and medal. I absolutely love it and it has gotten an overwhelmingly positive response thus far from people. We have actually gotten people who want to run the race just so they can have a medal with that on it. Well done sir, very well done.

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By the way, the page on my blog that is dedicated to the race with the link to register as well the full list of all the giveaways is right HERE.

I started to get the word out this weekend on facebook, and the response has been overwhelmingly positive. The blog has been blowing up in terms of page views for the Virtual Run page, and we already have 13 people signed up to run. (this is before the hardcore promotion of the event even begins, so I’m hoping we’re just scratching the surface here…) You can expect regular updates on the race as they become available, and if you have any questions at all about anything, please feel free to reach out to me through the comments section of the blog, or directly at: bigandysrunning@yahoo.com.

I hope you consider taking part in this race with us, and if you are local and running with us let me know, I would love to get a group to all run together that weekend.

Thanks so much, and as always: Take it easy.

Andy

(and the rest of “Team Pegasus”, Rock and Donna)

 

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One response to “Chilly Cheeks Virtual 5K Rollout/ Announcement!

  1. *sigh* In’ registered. Now to step up my game!! What a great practice for my 1st “5K race” in March!!

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