Things are really coming together in my 5K planning! Lack of fitness-related events might be a weakness for this town, but getting support is not. The advantages of small town life really shine when you have to gather contacts and help.
My main partner in this race is the local Farmers Market. The race will be held on May 8th, on the market's opening day. They are really excited about this event and it really ties in with their message of healthful living. I've already got a few sponsors and have a few others I'll be contacting this week.
I've been working on the race website (using Weebly.com, by the way, which turns out to be a really easy way to make a professional looking website) and I may or may not be totally obsessed. There's basic information; registrations forms for participants, volunteers, and sponsors; training plans; first time racer tips; and race day information.
(Since the motivation for this event was the announcement of our county's poor health ranking, this race is really geared at beginners and I'm trying very hard to make it as appealing as possible to new runners and walkers. We've left "5K" out of the title, opting for "Fun Run and Walk" instead. It's kind of a cop-out, but I really don't want to scare people away with terminology that might be intimidating. You have to remember, they don't even have cross-country teams here. This is all very new.)
I've also pulled together a committee with a representative from the city, the health department, and a few other organizations. We're meeting on Monday to make final decisions before we really go public and start advertising and promoting. I'll also start hitting up local businesses for prize donations next week.
There's a lot to get done NOW rather than later, since the race is less than 11 weeks away. Depending upon interest, I might try to get together a few training runs for beginners leading up to the race, so I really want to get the word out soon.
In this planning process so far, I have done a lot of web research. There are many good planning resources out there, but the best I have found, by far, is a resource posted by Adin Lykken at www.woofinhoofin.org called "Organizing a 5K Race: an insider's guide." It is a very comprehensive guide to planning, advertising, staffing, timing, and every-thing-else-ing a 5K and has been immensely helpful to me. The guide is available at www.woofinhoofin.org under the tab, "Organizing a 5K Race."
Thanks for y'all's suggestions and advice and please keep them coming!