Thursday, December 20, 2012

About 26.4.26

If you live in the Middle Tennessee area and you happen to be a member of its outstanding running community, or one of your friends happens to be a runner and is on facebook, perhaps you have heard about the amazing event that is taking place this coming Saturday at 8 AM, here in Nashville.

On Monday afternoon, Robbie Bruce had the bright idea to involve a few of his friends in a 26 mile run in memory of each of the 26 victims of the Sandy Hook tragedy.  So he texted his business partner and friend to solicit feedback.  Two texts later the decision had been made.

Later on that evening, my daughter recruited me to be one of the 26 runners that would participate in this event.  Yes, the idea was to have 26 people (individuals or relay teams) each run 26 miles. Each person would also donate $1 per mile.  These funds would go to the United Way of Western Connecticut.  WOW.. How awesome.  Immediately I agreed.

I posted on facebook my intentions to participate.  I read Robbie's post about the "why" of this event and it made all kinds of sense.  He has a 7 year old son and a mother and sister who are teachers.  He felt the need to do something.  I agreed.

Immediately all of us who had committed started recruiting.  We needed to find the 26 individuals or enough to fill relay teams.  Before we had a chance to take a deep breath the ball started rolling.  Everyone who could or though they could committed to running.  I think by the end of that night the initial goal had been reached and surpassed.

Within the first 24 hours the numbers had jumped to over 200.  And they were rolling in faster than could be tracked.  A facebook page was created for the event so folks could get the information needed.  This event had taken a life of its own.  People were asked to go here and agree to "attend".

Information was coming out rapidly.  All TV Stations in Middle Tennessee reported on the event yesterday, as did the local newspaper.   People were getting excited.  The numbers kept growing.  Changes would have to be made to the original plan.

As of this writing 640 people have committed through the fb page to participate.  This number has grown to a point where the original route has been changed.  We are now running from Nashville's LP Stadium.  The Nashville Running Company had originally agreed to host the event.  WOW, who knew! Thank you Lee Wilson for being there willing to do this.

Folks can run, walk or a combination of both.  They can do 6.5 miles, 13 miles, 19.5 miles or all 26.  As a matter of fact you can do any distance you want. There will be no starting gun, no timing chip, no finish line.  This is being done to "remember and support".

We expect the number to surpass 1000.  We just do.  We have no doubt, just how many past that will be an awesome number to see.

Additionally, many runnres who will be out of town, or that have heard of this event, have pledged to run their miles on their own and make a donation on line.

You don't have to run to participate.  A page has been set up so donations can be made.  Click here to go to this page.  There's also a option to purchase bumper stickers or tee shirts. Click here for more information.

A personal message from me to the Nashville and Middle Tennessee Running Community:  I am proud and honored to be associated with such magnificent, caring and giving people.  I am thankful that you folks have allowed me the opportunity to get to know you through these past few years.  You encompass the true meaning of Love.  Thank You!