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INAUGURAL RUN INSPIRED 10K ROAD RACE AT WINTERTHUR MUSEUM, GARDEN & LIBRARY

 TO BENEFIT OPERATION WARM

WINTERTHUR, Del. – Operation Warm Coats for Kids Foundation announces the inaugural RUN INSPIRED 10K road race on Sunday, October 23, 2016 from 8:00 am - 2:00 pm on the grounds of the Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library in Winterthur, Delaware. All proceeds will benefit Operation Warm, whose goal is to raise awareness of local child poverty and provide brand new winter coats to local children in need.

The force behind RUN INSPIRED’s creation is Operation Warm Founder Dick Sanford. His inspiration to create a road race to benefit at-risk children began several years ago when his grandson, Nik Toocheck, Ran the World for children.

“Nik ran his first marathon at the age of nine to raise money for Operation Warm,” said Operation Warm Founder Dick Sanford. Within two years, Toocheck became the youngest person to run a marathon on all seven continents, raising $42,000 in the process. “I was so inspired by his dedication and selflessness,” continued Sanford. “I knew I wanted to put on a race of my own to help even more children in need.”

While Toocheck was on his quest to run every continent, he became friends with running legend Dave McGillivray, race director of the B.A.A. (Boston Athletic Association) Boston Marathon. It wasn’t long before Dick approached Dave to help him create a one-of-a-kind race in the Delaware Valley.

“When I first met Dick he told me of his vision to put on a world-class race that would benefit children. I was immediately intrigued,” said McGillivray. “Nowadays, road races are so popular. I knew he would need a truly special location to pull this off. That’s when Dick took me to Winterthur.”

Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library is the former Delaware estate home of Henry Francis du Pont and has been open to the public for 60 years. This world-renowned property is filled with serene meadows, rippling streams, historic buildings, and a 60-acre naturalistic garden, which includes the Enchanted Woods. Winterthur is known for its annual Point-to-Point Steeplechase horse race that has drawn more than 15,000 spectators each spring for the past 38 years.

“The first time I set foot on Winterthur’s property – I knew we had something special,” explained Dave McGillivray. “Whenever we create a new race, we want to ensure it meets the high standards our runners deserve. This course is unique. You’ve got rolling hills, scenic views; it’s the perfect backdrop for a race.”

Working with Jill Abbott, Winterthur’s Senior Events Director, Dave laid out the 6.2-mile course to his specifications and race development began. By winter, plans were solidified, and RUN INSPIRED 10K was born. RUN INSPIRED 10K will be the first road race of its kind to take place throughout the 1,000- acre preserve.

“We couldn’t be more excited to have runners across the Mid-Atlantic participate in such a unique event,” expressed Erin McMullin, Event Manager. “We said it from the beginning; we want this to be more than a race. Between the location, course layout, and family-friendly finisher’s party, it will truly be an inspiring event for everyone. Knowing that we’ll be able to help provide brand new coats to thousands of kids in need will help Operation Warm expand its mission,” said McMullin.

Bib pick-up & day of registration starts at 8:00 am. The race will begin at 9:30 am, rain or shine, on Sunday, October 23, 2016. All participants and spectators are welcome to join the Finishers Party from 10:15 am - 2:00 pm. Experience live musical entertainment, refreshments (including food trucks and a beer garden), various exhibitors & vendors, and family-friendly games & activities.

Registration is now available online through www.runINSPIREDraces.com.

For more information on the event, to volunteer, or to become a sponsor, visit runINSPIREDraces.com or email Erin McMullin at erin@operationwarm.org.

About Operation Warm: Since 2002, Operation Warm has inspired hope and empowered communities by manufacturing and distributing high-quality, new winter coats to nearly 2 million children in need throughout the US. Every child deserves to be warm, but today families are struggling with tough choices and limited resources. Necessity dictates that food and shelter take precedence over clothing, but children without coats are often absent from school in the winter, unable to play outside or partake in activities, and suffer from low self-esteem as a result. Operation Warm’s vision is that every child wearing a new winter coat is warm, feels valued, and is empowered to get to school and gain an education. www.operationwarm.org

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