Girls on the Run coming to an elementary school near you

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Editor’s note: Tompkins Weekly and ESPN Ithaca are owned by the same company,Vizella Media.

Learn. Dream. Live. Run. That is the motto of Girls on the Run and it will be put into action on June 12, which is both Giving Is Gorges Day 2019 and the Twilight 5K when a new effort to expand Girls on the Run (GOTR) to every elementary school in Tompkins County is launched. To help make this a reality, ESPN Ithaca, Finger Lakes Running Club, and GiveGab have teamed up with the Upstate chapter of Girls on the Run to ensure every girl in Tompkins County who would like to take part in this vital program has access to it and cost is not a barrier to participation.


Girls on the Run is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a world where every girl knows and activates her limitless potential and is free to boldly pursue her dreams. Running is used to inspire and motivate girls, as well as encourage lifelong health and fitness, and build confidence through accomplishment. Some of the side benefits are the development of important social, psychological, and physical skills and abilities, which are reinforced throughout the program.


At each season’s conclusion, the girls and their running buddies complete a 5K running event which gives them a tangible sense of achievement as well as a framework for setting and achieving life goals. The result is making the seemingly impossible, possible.

“We are excited to partner with ESPN Ithaca, GiveGab, and FLRC to create more awareness about GOTR and the life-changing benefits it brings to girls who participate. Being able to gain confidence, compassion and other skills that can be applied to situations for years to come while realizing your own star power is pretty special,” said Danielle Fleckenstein, Executive Director of Girls on the Run Upstate. “Finishing off the season with the Twilight 5k is not only a fun way to end the season but also shows our girls they can accomplish anything! Girls on the Run is an amazing opportunity that every 3rd-8th girl in Tompkins county should have the chance to participate in if she chooses!”
Mickie Sanders-Jauquet, who is the race director for the Finger Lakes Runners Club’s Twilight 5K explains the way GOTR mission aligns with that of the FLRCC.


“Part of the mission of FLRC is to encourage folks of all ages to run whether for fun, health or competition. Towards this end, the board decided to make our races affordable for everyone and especially encourage families to run by having free entry for youths 18 and younger,” Sanders-Jauquet said. “About the same time as this decision, Girls on the Run approached us for support in expanding the program to Ithaca. Girls on the Run very much fits into our mission and we were able to help jump-start teams in Moravia, BJM and Lansing that first year with financial support and a drive to get coaches. The Twilight 5K seemed to be a natural fit for the teams to run. It happens towards the end of the school year, isn’t far from many of the area schools and kids run for free.”


Donations to support the expansion of the program can be made through the Giving Is Gorges Day platform on June 12, at the Twilight 5K, or via gotrupstateny.org after the event ends.

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