RockyTHON hosts virtual Spooky Sprint 5K

Rachel Greene, Editor-in-chief

Western Illinois University RockyTHON is hosting its first-ever virtual 5K event on Oct. 9 through Oct. 11.

Because of University policies and COVID-19 regulations, typical fundraisers and events can not occur. RockyTHON tends to host a color run 5K, but throwing the colored powder during a pandemic is not a feasible option. This event will close out RockyTHON’s Child Health Week. Child Health Day, which starts Monday the 5th, is a national holiday that recognizes the support of children’s health. One of the Directors of Special Events, Rachel Burd, said, “Since we can no longer have the color run, we are so excited that we have found a way to raise awareness and funds for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals of St. Louis. To register for the Spooky Sprint 5K, participants can fill out a Google Form on the event’s Facebook Group which is called “RockyTHON’s Virtual Spooky Sprint 5K” and then an email with more information about registering on the app. There will be contests and prizes given such as most money fundraised during the week, top three finishing times for the race and Western Illinois University student organization with the most participants.”

Rather than a color run, the special events team decided to shift to a fun, seasonal event and thus the Spooky Sprint 5K was born. As the name suggests, the event will be Halloween themed, and participants are encouraged to wear costumes. If they decide to participate pets, pet costumes are also highly encouraged. There will be prizes provided for the best costumes and for the winners of the 5K. The event will be held virtually via the “JustMove-Keep Connected” app. The race will take place over the course of three days in order to give more participants the chance to get involved. Because there are no supplies required and there is not a venue, the event is free to all participants, but donations are highly encouraged.

The Vice President of External, Marisa Santore, said, “I am very excited for this event to occur. Not only is it an opportunity to fundraise for the kids, but it is also an opportunity to showcase our organization and hopefully recruit more students to join us in supporting our cause. It has been increasingly challenging to reach students, especially freshmen, so we are grateful for this chance to share our passion for the kids with them! I think the costumes are going to make this event super fun and will boost morale.”

To donate, people can go to https://events.dancemarathon.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.participant&participantID=757165. If someone wants to donate to a specific participant to help them win the prize for most fundraised, they can simply put their name in the memo line.