Monday, May 28, 2012

orphan run

Well, it's official.  
I've survived my first 5K event as a promoter.  I've run enough of them to know what runners expect, but being on the other end is very different.  When I first dreamed this fundraiser up, I had no clue what I was getting myself into.  It turned out to be a really great event overall.  

Things I loved...
  • our volunteers
    • Sometimes I think people say "I couldn't have done this without you" because they feel obligated to say it.  Not the case here.  I honest to goodness could NOT have pulled this off without all of my amazing volunteers.  If I tried to list you all, I'd forget some, so I'm just going to say THANK YOU!  
  • my husband being home to help
    • I have to specifically mention Kevin because he took the weekend off of work, which I know was not fun for him.  As difficult as that was for him to do, I am so thankful he did. When I think back to the day of the race, I'm overwhelmed picturing it without his help.  So to Kevin I say another big THANKS!
  • the turnout
    • We tried to schedule this race for November because that's Orphan Awareness Month.  No such luck.  Then we moved it to March.  Again, no luck.  So we tried for a third date, which worked!  The downside was that it was Memorial Day weekend.  You know, the weekend everyone goes out of town.  I had to laugh that God would give us the weekend that was vacation-packed as our big fundraiser.  What a sense of humor!  It was as if He was forcing us to a place of trusting Him with this event.  I know it sounds silly, but that's how I have to see it.  Regardless of all my worries, the date was perfect and the turnout was even better!  We were praying for 150-200 runners, and we got 150.  Yay!  

  • the venue
    • I chose Veteran's Park because it was a venue that was an "all in one" package.  In one fee we took care of parking EMTs, police, seating, a pre-measured course, etc.  The course is absolutely beautiful.  Definitely a favorite now!

Things I will change next year...
  • committees
    • To say that planning this event was overwhelming is an understatement.  Wow, so much work.  I have somewhat of a control-freak problem.  There's no way I can take this on alone again, so next year I'll be recruiting some other peeps to carry some of the load
  • volunteers
    • Thankfully we just barely had enough volunteers this year.  It was cutting close.  In fact, me and a couple other people had to do double duty on some of the stations.  Can you say panic attack?  'Cause that's how I was feeling for a minute.  I learned just how many volunteers I need to make a 5K happen.  
  • advertising/marketing
    • The goal is to make the Orphan Run 5K an annual event, with proceeds going to various companies/families that are involved in orphan care.  The number one question I fielded from people this year was "Where is the money going?" That was tough to answer because with this being a Christ City Church event, we aren't really responsible for where the funds go.  We just offered to organize an event that would help our city care for orphans. We are excited, though, to know that our Gia will be one of the benefactors of this year's race.  
  • time of year
    • It was stinkin' HOT.  There's no way around it.  I am so proud of the brave souls that raced in this crazy Bama summer heat.  Go you!  I'd like to see the next race be schedule for October 2013.  Probably the same weekend as Race for the Cure.  NOT!  I'll definitely have to plan around that monstrous 5K.  
  • Fun Run
    • Along with the 5K, we hosted a one mile "Fun Run" too.  We were thinking a lot people might like to show up last minute and participate in a little family friendly run.  I'm not sure it was as productive as we had hoped, so that will probably be tossed next year.  We'll see... 

Things I was pleasantly surprised with...
  • the venue
    • I touched on this earlier, but I just cannot get over how pretty this course is.  
  • generosity of sponsors
    • We were very blessed to have enough business sponsors to get this thing going.  I was even more surprised that some of our sponsors went over and beyond what was expected of them.   

Thanks so much for all of you that have prayed for this event and helped us with it.  We are thankful for your love and friendship.

Next up...  Pop Goes the 90s!   I'll get Kevin to guest post about that event this week sometime.  It's going to be awesome!

Sending Hugs

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