One of my favorite annual events is just around the corner: Pat’s Run on April 26 in Tempe. If you’ve participated in this race once, I’m sure that you’re already registered. It is hard to believe that this will be the 10th year for this event. Pat’s Run is the perfect way to finish the spring running season in Tempe. It’s a lot of fun and it raises money for an excellent cause.
If you haven’t run in this event yet, here are a few reasons why Pat’s Run shouldn’t be missed.
- Run to honor Pat Tillman’s legacy. Arizona State University alumni Pat Tillman left his pro football career to join the Army. Pat’s Run is held in late April to commemorate the day Pat lost his life in Afghanistan serving with the 75th Ranger Regiment. This run is 4.2 miles long and ends on the 42 yard line inside Sun Devil Stadium. This is symbolic of the #42 jersey that Pat wore when he played football for ASU.
- Raise money for a really good cause. The money raised at this event goes to the Pat Tillman Foundation for the Tillman Military Scholars program. This provides scholarships for U.S. military veterans and spouses who reflect the values that Pat stood for: strength of character and commitment to service. Raising money for them is the least that we can do to honor those who served our country.
- This is one of the most inspiring events that you’ll ever be a part of. I participate in events like this to feel a sense of camaraderie with other runners and walkers. There’s nothing like gathering at the start line with 30,000 other people at Pat’s Run. Everyone is excited and committed to donating money to this great cause that has created something positive out of a tragedy. But, perhaps my favorite thing is observing the other participants. You’ll see soldiers running in their boots and all of their gear. You’ll see parents with kids in tow. You’ll see athletes in wheelchairs. From college kids to seniors, just about everyone is wearing their Pat’s Run shirts. It’s a sight to be seen.
- Speaking of the shirts, they’re pretty awesome. The Pat Tillman Foundation puts so much effort into this race, down to the shirts that they give to each participant. They are always a good quality, dri-fit running shirt, emblazoned with the name of the race and a #42. I have a collection of them and whenever I wear them out and about, I usually strike up a conversation with someone who also participated. I love that sense of belonging.
I hope I’ve inspired you to sign up for Pat’s Run, but be sure to register right now. Pat’s Run almost always sells out. Go to http://pattillmanfoundation.org/pats-run/ for all of the details. See you there!