The Sandy Hook Run for Families is a 5K run/fitness walk that debuted last year to honor the memories of the victims of 12/14 and to support those affected by the events of that day. The run was initially planned to take place in Danbury, and had to be moved twice to accommodate the high volume of interest among prospective participants.
Approximately 15,000 runners and walkers took to the streets of Hartford and virtually in their own areas to show support for Newtown on March 23, 2013, raising more than $438,000 for The Sandy Hook School Support Fund.
On Saturday, March 29, the second Sandy Hook Run for Families will be held, this time in the town the event works to benefit. The on-site event will start at 8 am on the campus of Fairfield Hills and will feature a 5K run/fitness walk as well as a half-mile fun run for children ages 2-11. Runners and walkers of all abilities and families with strollers will be welcome.
Registration fees from the event and fundraising will be donated this year to The Newtown Memorial Fund.
Due to the location, the second annual Sandy Hook Run for Families has a maximum cap of 1,000 runners to participate on-site.
“We understand that many more than this ran in last year’s 5K, so to make things as fair as possible, these spots will be awarded on a lottery basis, with some priority to Newtown and Sandy Hook residents, as well as town officials, first responders, educators, and clergy members,” race organizers posted on their website on January 10. A link for lottery registration will be launched on the office race website (5KRunForSHF.org) and on the YMCA Racing Collaborative Facebook page on Sunday, January 19, at 8 pm. Lottery registration will close Saturday, February 1, at 11:59 pm.
Lottery status notifications will be emailed on Monday, February 3. Those who are selected to receive a lottery spot will have one week to register. Those who decide at that time to not run are asked to contact race organizers as soon as possible, so that race spots may be given to the next person on a waiting list. Those who are waitlisted will be notified of their change in status should one occur.
For those who are unable to participate in Newtown but would like to be a part of the event, there will once again be a “Virtual Runner” option. This option will allow an unlimited number of individuals to register and run in their local areas on March 29 in honor of those in Newtown. Participants registered through the virtual option will receive a T-shirt, racer’s bib, and a finisher’s certificate.
Registration for the Virtual Run will also open on January 19.
The race fee is $26 for adults, whether running in person or in the Virtual Race.
A total of 250 spots are available, on a first-come, first-served basis, for the kids’ fun run.
“The response to last year’s event was so overwhelming. We wanted to make sure the meaning behind this event continued on so that the running community could continue to show its support for the families of Newtown,” said Katie Blake who, along with Matt Marcella, is returning to co-chair the 2014 event. Blake is this year’s race director; Marcella is the virtual run director. The 2014 race is also being organized by an all-volunteer committee.
Visit www.5krunforshf.org for the latest information regarding registration and other information as it becomes available.
In addition to the road race and kids fun run, organizers have also announced a contest for young Newtown artists. Logo designs by children ages 2-10 are being sought for the fun run T-shirts. Deadline to enter the contest is January 31, and ten artists whose designs are selected for the fun run T-shirts will also win $15 gift certificates to The Toy Tree in Sandy Hook. (Full story here.)
The Hartford Marathon Foundation’s Sandy Hook Run For the Families was awarded Best Amateur Single-Sport Event by SportsTravel Magazine at the Travel, Events And Management in Sports (TEAMS) 2013 Conference & Expo in Salt Lake City, Utah, in November.
The Hartford Marathon Foundation donated its resources to produce the Sandy Hook Run for the Families and enlisted support of longtime business, community, and civic partners in honoring the memories of victims and supporting all of those affected by 12/14. The event reached maximum registration capacity of 15,000, and was recognized by Running USA as the world’s largest inaugural 5K with 9,479 timed finishers and an additional 897 registered participants in the Kids Run.