Time is running out to register for Run Seal Beach

“One day the factory sports coach, who was very strict, pointed at four boys, including me, and ordered us to run in a race. I protested that I was weak and not fit to run, but the coach sent me for a physical examination and the doctor said that I was perfectly well. So I had to run, and when I got started I felt I wanted to win. But I only came in second. That was the way it started.”

This story, related by Emil Zatopek, a Czechoslovak long-distance runner best known for winning three gold medals at the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki goes to the heart of the nature of running.  Running for many is a lifelong joy and adventure, others a path to fitness, for some a pastime and others, an activity to be studiously avoided.  Here in Seal Beach, we have the Run Seal Beach® (RSB) 5K/10K and the 1K kids Fun Run.  We as a community are proud to not only have the event, but to have had so many diverse friends, neighbors and even visitors search out and run our race.  Some of our oldest participants are in their 90s and our youngest, about 4 years old.  Check it all out at www.runsealbeach.com

Run Seal Beach is not just a typical 501(c)3 organization, but rather a 41 year community institution.  In addition, it was recently awarded its primary ownership of the US Patent and Trademark Office via official registration. It is one of the longest running continual annual events in Seal Beach.  All of its proceeds (except a small annual reserve) are dispersed every year through a director’s award and grant process to other non-profit organizations.  During the last 12 years, since 2003, Run Seal Beach has given back over $1.2M to our community, youth, schools, enrichment, senior and special need projects.

The key focus of the event is in health and wellness for all ages, though many of the funds get passed through to athletic booster clubs at Los Alamitos High School and other organizations in the Los Alamitos Unified School District.  Due to the Centennial, there has been some confusion about the date, so be sure to register NOW for March 21st, 2015.  Our start times are as they have been for the last two decades, at 7:30 a.m. and 8 a.m. at First Street and Marina Avenue.

Same day registration is not done, so please go online.  If you do have questions, call 562-493-1015 to speak with one of our race directors, most likely Elizabeth Kane. The key growth of the organization has really come as a result of the core guidance of Elizabeth Kane and Marc Loopesko, who function really as if they were full time event coordinators, producers and staff.

Since 2011, RSB expanded its outreach to include Director’s Grants.  These grants are awarded to organizations where some unexpected funds could go a long way to help them in their mission.  Marc and Elizabeth, both driven, successful corporate executives have taken those skills and applied them to producing perhaps one of the finest race events in all of California, if not the nation.

Why is this true?  The event has completely sold out for the last five years and is expected to this year.  The directors have capped the participation of the Kids Fun Run to 400 children under 10 to ensure quality in the Kids Fun Zone and the safety of the race and the total participation is capped at no more than 6,000 all together.  It is also true because RSB has had an incredible duration of key sponsors.  This year, they are being particularly singled out because there are those who have been committed to RSB for ten or more years: our “Legacy” sponsors, such as: the City of Seal Beach, Dekra-Lite, the Seal Beach Chamber of Commerce, the Fish Company, O’Malley’s, Wicorek Dentistry and Ned’s Produce.  Similarly, our “Enduring” partners between six and nine years: Scan Health Plans, AES Alamitos, Richards, Watson & Gershon, Shey-Harding, Seal Beach Podiatry, CalCopa and our media sponsor the Sun Newspapers.

Run Seal Beach is proud to be part of the Centennial Celebration year, not as an official Centennial event, but as a collaborative partner with the Centennial.

As you check your calendar this year, you will see that each month is full of activities, but few raise money and disperse it throughout our community like Run Seal Beach.

So regardless of you walking, running or something in between, we hope to see you at 7:30 am at 1st and Marina for the 1K Kids Fun Run and at 8 am for the the 5/10K start.  RSB will need over 550 volunteers, and if you haven’t run, then try volunteering!  As always, remember our slogan: Come run with us!

RSB hopes to have one of the best years ever for our Centennial.  That is only possible thanks to the number of participants and volunteers.

Also, as a final reminder, the grant application cycle ends on April 30, so if your organization is looking for funding, be sure to get it in before that date.  See you at the starting line.

Seth Eaker is director of public relations for Run Seal Beach.