The secret to the success behind the 1500+ runners for Dream Mile this year was the power of team work. This is purely based on volunteers working collaboratively having only one goal in mind — helping the underprivileged children.
Here is a snapshot of the workmanship behind Dream Mile 2013:
- Larger water cups on the trail
- Prize categories using 10-year ranges
- Expanded registration options through models such as “Give what you can” and “Raise funds and Run free”
Website/Technology– To begin with, the Dream Mile website was made over to adorn a great new look. The winter cool colors would entice anyone to run the Dream Mile even in the hottest of weather conditions. The Dream Mile banner fit well with the cool background and set the design basis for the Dream Mile T-shirt.
Publicity/Social Media Marketing
Highlight: This year’s Dream Mile saw a record breaking number of 1500+ registrations this year.
The reason: publicity. Fortunately, we had a great team and once again team work played a key role in our success. Active efforts from volunteers to market the event through channels namely, email, online postings in running clubs, free classifieds, active.com advertising, cross promoting, word of mouth publicity, and social media marketing played a critical role in the success of the event.
This year we leveraged social media marketing to spread awareness about Dream Mile by cross promoting with other NGOs, and giving periodic updates and reminders of the event to volunteers and runners. Through cross promotions free airtime was offered in the WomenNow television talk show to showcase our event. We also ran Facebook ads that helped spread awareness of our cause and event.
Highlight: Raised $36,000+ through registrations.
This team was led by two of our volunteers who handled registrations very efficiently. Their efforts were so seamless that it amazed many in our team. There were a couple of processes that were continued from last year, one was the two day pre-event bib pickup at two locations and the other was adding timing chips for each runner.
Sponsorship and Fundraising
Highlight: Through Dream Mile fundraising we managed to raise close to $40,000 that will help us support approximately 350 children.
While Jano India, Canvas Info Tech, and Road Runner Sports supported us through their monetary donations, a few of our sponsors showed their support by making in-kind donations. Namely, Road ID contributed bibs and gift certificates, Dosa Bawarchi provided delicious Indian food, and Zico gave away free coconut water to our runners. Also, Sports Basement continued their support for Dream Mile this year.
Day of the Event (Sunday June 2, 2013 Hellyer County Park, San Jose, CA)
Highlight: Volunteer efforts gave way to great feedback from runners.
It was a cool morning in the beautiful Hellyer Park, while the sun was still waking up from a good night’s rest, the trail side lake shimmering in all its glory, and the early morning dew covering the grass, our Bay Area volunteers were all ready to take on the 1500+ Dream Mile runners. All aspects of the event namely the registrations, logistics, food and carnival were covered. The carnival team which was led by the Vibha Bay Area Youth Chapter was also ready to entertain the Dream Mile kids.
To avoid delays, we had separate lanes for pre-registrants and ‘day of event’ registrants. Half Marathon, 10K and 5K races started at 7.30am, 8.00am and 8.20am respectively. Like each year, we had kids participate in the race as well. Our volunteers wished all our runners well as they got ready to begin their race. Out of the 1500+ registrations, 450 were half marathoners who managed to finish the race. Kudos to all the participants!
Volunteers moved swiftly helping fellow volunteers and making sure all event processes were intact. As the last few runners crossed the finish line, our volunteer base shifted gears to begin the clean up process.
Some feedback quotes were:
- Well planned and organized event.
- Well stocked and well placed water stations – there was one just when you were getting thirsty.
- I am going to recommend this race to my friends
- I do a few events (half marathons and marathons) per year, and I have to say this is by far THE BEST event I’ve been to.
- I’ve never seen this many WELL STOCKED water stations ever!
- Everyone was very nice and encouraging.
- Nice trail, no lines, and no backups.
- Thank you for an amazing event! I’ll be back next year for sure!
- Excellent organization!
So to sum it all up, we had a successful Dream Mile this year with $40,000 raised through fundraising, 1500+ registrations, $36,000 raised through registrations and great feedback from our event participants. None of the above would have been possible without the three Cs, Conviction, Commitment and Consideration. This has served our Vibha volunteers as a great motivator to conduct Dream Mile each year and with the same zeal, if not more we’ll be back again next year to present to you, ‘The Dream Mile.’