UW Sunday Column 7-6-14: United We Run

Nichole Dupont: United We Run
As originally published in the State Journal-Register, Our Towns section

DupontWhat would you say to getting your Saturday started with some exercise and family fun in a beautiful setting? Sounds pretty good doesn’t it? If you throw in the fact it’s all for a worthy cause, you might have the makings of a perfect way to spend a Saturday morning. It just so happens Springfield has a great place to accomplish all of this and it’s taking place in a few days!

For the 3rd year in a row, BUNN & Springfield Electric have teamed up to host the Run United 5k & Kids Fun Run.  This year the community event will take place Saturday, July 19th, with Washington Park providing a gorgeous course for runners of all ages and skills level.  Moreover, if you’re not a runner there’s plenty of post-race activities for everyone including music and food for purchase from Twyford BBQ along with a bounce house, face painting and more for the youngsters.

For BUNN & Springfield Electric, Run United is more than just a 5k race; it’s an opportunity to organize a family-friendly community event while helping the many nonprofit programs making the Springfield area a better place to live.  We wanted an event in which everyone who participated had fun while every child walked away as a winner.  Organizing a 5k and Kids Fun Run offered both and United Way’s Community Fund provided the most effective way to help agencies throughout our community.

United Way’s Community Fund is unique to our community, providing support to local nonprofit programs addressing multiple needs throughout our area.  It offers us the opportunity to not just support a single cause, but to change lives through multiple programs working collaboratively to improve our community.

United Way’s Community Fund also provided the best method to distributing race proceeds to local programs in a measured, effective way.  Contributions to the community fund are not assessed an administrative or fundraising fee, meaning that every dollar raised through Run United goes directly to local programs; and because of the generosity of our event sponsors, ever penny of your registration fee is passed through to the community fund.   It is this very reason that runners will not only find United Way staff & volunteers at the race on July 19th, but also staff and volunteers representing the Girl Scouts, Mini O’Beirne, Sojourn Shelter, Catholic Charities and numerous other organizations.  Run United, just like United Way, brings our community together, because together we are stronger…because together we are better…because we are Better United.

We invite you to join us at Washington Park on July 19th, as our friends, coworkers, neighbors , local nonprofits and their clients gather to celebrate at Run United.  The 5K will open the festivities at 8 a.m. sharp with a Kids Run to follow at 9 a.m. Race registration is affordable with participants receiving a medal at the finish line and a goody bag for running highlighted by a dry fit shirt (dry fit shirt not guaranteed for late registrants).

Because Run United is a community event, ourselves and our sponsors want every child to have the opportunity to participate.  Therefore, if you have a child receiving services at a United Way member agency, please contact that agency for a discount for agency clients.

The first two editions of Run United have been extremely successful and we hope you will help make this year an even greater success.  You can register for Run United at www.springfieldunitedway.org.

Nichole DuPont is the Social Media Coordinator and Graphic Designer at BUNN. She is the Co-Chair of the RUN UNITED 5K. RUN UNITED is planned and organized by the employees of BUNN & Springfield Electric.  Look for United Way columns weekly in Our Towns.