By Bruce Overstreet
The Oso tragedy has left us all with heavy hearts. We certainly don’t need to know directly of someone who has lost their life to be affected by the devastating mudslide. It’s how we respond to such an event that says so much about our community.
And the response so far would suggest that our community is incredibly strong. Our community is committed to helping those who are struggling — whether it’s the local volunteers of the Red Cross and the first responders who have been there every day since the devastation, or the schools, businesses, and thousands of individuals who have found a way to make their own special contribution in this time of need.
For many, they may still be looking for a way to make a difference. So, on April 26 the Oso Mudslide Benefit Run at the Arlington Airport may be just the thing for some. Here is an opportunity to feel as if you are making a difference. Here is a chance to show unified support for the people of Oso, Darrington, and Arlington.
The event, hosted by Arlington Runners Club, is one of many charity fun runs the ARC has put on in the past nine years. Last year the ARC raised money to benefit the families and victims of the Boston Marathon bombing.
This one is a little closer to everyone’s home and heart.
That’s why ARC, along with the Skagit Runners Club have partnered to take 100 percent of the registration fee and donate the money to three local organizations which have been closely involved in the entire rescue, recovery and relief efforts: Darrington Family Support Services; Oso Mudslide Relief, which has been administrated by the Oso Community Church; and Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue, which has worked tirelessly on the crisis.
That’s also why Jon Hatfield, ARC’s president, is anticipating over 1,000 people participating in this event. Currently, over 510 people have registered.
The benefit run is taking place just east of the Stillaguamish Athletic Club located at 4417- 172nd Street NE. Registration is now open and one can access ARC’s website or ARC’s Facebook event page. You can also email ARC at osounitedrun@ArlingtonRunnersClub.org.
There will be three courses one may choose to run: 1 mile, 5,000 meters, or 10,000 meters. The 1-mile course is a very simple, flat loop. The 5K run consists of an out-and-back course. And the 10K course loops around the entire airport. If you have never had the chance to run the airport loop, this is a great chance to experience it. And it’s for a great cause.
My hope is that this blog post will encourage just a couple more people to take a break from their normal workout routine this Saturday and drive to Arlington for this special event.
It is events like this that really bring different segments of a community together. It is moments like this that give us a chance to pause, reflect, and really appreciate the incredible support our community provides for those who are suffering. Speaking of moments to pause, the benefit run will be preceded by a moment of silence at 10:37 a.m. with the start of the run at 10:45 a.m.
Please join us in another way of showing just what it means to be Oso Strong on Saturday, April 26. Your run will seem effortless as you get swept away in the spirit of the event.