Race #38 – Running for the Food Bank

Just some of the 114 Harrisburg Area River Runners who participated in the June Miles Challenge

Race #38: The June Miles Challenge, organized by the Harrisburg Area River Runners

The Cause: The Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, serving 27 counties in PA

With nearly all races canceled for the foreseeable future, my amazing running friend Marjorie threw down a challenge to Harrisburg Area River Runners: Donate at least $15, proceeds will go to our area food bank, receive a “June Miles Challenge” T-shirt, and track your running mileage in June in a friendly competition to keep each other accountable, in the absence of races. (Marjorie also organized my Race #12 to benefit the hungry.)

Several very cool aspects of this competition included:

One of our River Runners created a Google spreadsheet that tracked all of our miles, individually and collectively. It was amazing to see our miles add up so quickly!

The second, even cooler thing that happened is that one of our River Runners “sweetened” the pot. He pledged to donate an additional 10 cents to the food bank, for every mile we completed. What generosity–during a time of unprecented need. Runners are good people! (Wait till you see our stats, compiled below!)

Even though many of us “normally” run together, most of us were running separately, alone, during June. So this challenge helped us feel like we were still indeed running together, keeping that sense of “running community” alive and well. We had a little Facebook group where we posted updates and photos from our runs.

Here are photos from my first day (June 1) and final day (June 30) runs:

Here are some of our final stats, showing how our miles helped the hungry, in our region:

Runners: 114

Total mileage: 12,926.4

Average mileage per runner: 113


Highest mileage: 458 miles, by Joe, who made the bonus donation

Total donation to the food bank: $1,000 plus Joe’s donation of $1,265 = $2,265

My finish: Runner #50 out of 114

And here are some more photos from my June runs–many of which focus on flowers and nature. June is one of the most beautiful months, and it felt great, amid the pandemic, to get out and enjoy these sights and lift my spirits.


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