Monday, January 07, 2008

Millennium Mile raises Thousands
Heather and I once again participated in the Millennium Mile Run back in Londonderry, NH. The race was started in 1999 on the cusp of the Millennium as a way for a bunch of serious runners to reunite for the holidays and possibly run a sub-four minute mile. Well, what began as a laid-back get-together has evolved into one of New Hampshire's biggest running events and one heck of a fun one too!
I interviewed race co-founder John Mortimer a few years back for a piece I did in Northwest Runner. And I met race co-founder Andy Downin last April while doing a story and participating in the inaugural Eugene Marathon. Both Andy and John are great people, not to mention great runners. But what I really found impressive about these guys and the race is how they turned it into a fundraiser for the Jack and June Mortimer Memorial & Millennium Mile Scholarship Fund. Both of John's parents succumbed to cancer, and John wanted to find a way to honor them. He did it by starting this memorial which awards scholarships to promising young runners from New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Now, here's the kicker. One hundred percent of the race proceeds go directly into the scholarship fun. You heard me correctly-100%. The race's sponsors have picked up all of the costs for running the event.
Now perhaps someone over at the Seattle Marathon can give these guys a call. It seems that they have a little image problem after it was reported in the Seattle Times that not one penny of their race fee went to their sponsored cause, the University of Washington Medical Center. You heard me correctly, not one penny! Runners had the option of donating extra to the race's cause-extra on top of the $100 the race charged to sign-up. How much was donated to the marathon's charity- a mere $12,000 on an event that pulled in over $1 million . A mere pittance too when the race had over 11,000 participants.
The Millennium Mile which cost $10 to enter raised over $6,000 with their 600 plus runners. Now that's impressive and a race truly worthy of stating that they support a cause! Good job Millennium Mile people! We'll back at the end of this year to give that downhill course another whirl!
(photo-me at race headquarters!)

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