WINONA LAKE – To say the COVID-19 relief run for Grace men’s soccer has gone well is a drastic understatement.
The Lancers are in the midst of a mind-boggling marathon, aimed to raise money for COVID-19 relief funds.
The team is taking turns running around the clock in shifts, which in turn has brought in thousands of dollars to COVID-19 relief efforts. With players stationed around the world in their hometowns, Grace has managed to cover every hour of the day (and night) with someone running.
The run was initially planned to go 48 hours — an impressive feat by itself. But after an unquestioned success after the first day, the team made the decision to extend the run.
Grace will now run around the clock for one week, 24 hours a day for seven consecutive days. The event, which began April 1, will continue nonstop until April 8 at 12 p.m. (ET).
“We are so thankful for the outpouring of support in our community and across the country for this event,” said head coach Arron Patrick. “Things are going so well that we’ve decided to extend the run to a full week. We want to be strong when things get tough, and we are grateful to be able to support others during this time of need with our running. I appreciate everyone who has given or prayed to support us, and we encourage others to join this important cause.”
The event has not only attracted thousands of dollars in the fundraiser — nearly $5,400 as of 11:15 p.m. Thursday — but also substantial media coverage. The Lancers’ run has been covered by seven TV stations and numerous print outlets, including The Chicago Tribune.
The marathon will mainly be manned by the players and coaching staff of Grace’s men’s soccer team. With the additional five days, the Lancers have enlisted the help of Grace’s cross country squad (coached by Jake Poyner) as well as other members of the Grace community.
In the first two days, the global run has already had legs take place in New Zealand, England, Portugal, Brazil and Germany as well as US states like California, Florida, Michigan and Ohio to name a few.
Each leg of the COVID-19 relief run is being documented live on Grace’s Instagram page (@Grace__Soccer).
The relief funds that the team selected to give money to include IMA World Health, Salvation Army (Warsaw) and Elkhart’s COVID-19 Community Response Fund.