As director of the Miles of Mooresville Evening Race Series and Historic Mooresville 5K, Vince Pastore extols people's generosity. The four events generate money for Race City Runners Foundation, a nonprofit.
"We're proud of what we've accomplished for a small organization," Pastore said.
Created to benefit local charities, the foundation focuses mainly on promoting literacy. The board donates $3,000 to Lowe's YMCA Starfish Academy, a program to improve reading and comprehension skills of at-risk children. Twenty-four first- and second-graders attend the free six-week summer day camp.
Another $1,000 helps the Mooresville Library's literacy program. Some 5K participants carry books throughout the race to highlight the campaign.
With the addition of Miles of Mooresville, sponsored by Bottom Dollar Food, the foundation can contribute $1,000 to the Iredell County Humane Society's no-kill animal shelter.
Although those three groups get most of the donations, others also receive money.
"We're trying to reach as many organizations as possible," said Pastore.
For example, the board donates to Girls on the Run of Iredell County. The prevention program educates and prepares preteen girls to develop self-respect and healthy lifestyles. Members volunteer during races.
Increasing participation in races boosts contributions. Typically 200 runners have competed in the Miles series June 18 and July 16. Competitors can run laps of one, two or three miles. Some complete all three events.
Runners love the evening races. The next one is Aug. 13.
The foundation's finale, the Historic Mooresville 5K to Benefit Literacy Efforts, will be at 8 a.m. Sept. 11. The family-friendly race attracts both runners and walkers. About 30 children register for the 1K Fun Run.
Volunteers provide support. As runners pass Mooresville High, ROTC members hand out bottled water. Other people work at registration tables and distribute T-shirts. Cyclists, who must be 18 or older, patrol the race to ensure everyone's safety. Police follow at the back of the pack.
Piedmont Health Care is the primary sponsor. Although the company does not subsidize Miles races, its volunteers show up to give away water and bananas.
Pastore said Queen City Timing, a local company, is a quiet supporter of all four races.
"It has been a sponsor from the ground up. Without them, there couldn't be a race series in the area," he said.
He said Homesley Goodman Wingo PLLC is another strong advocate of literacy and the library. The firm opens its parking lot, makes restrooms available and writes a check for the 5K.
Donations from La Patisserie and the sponsorship of Soirée and The Insurance Center also help promote races.
Peninsula Baptist Church will offer a parenting conference led by nationally known speakers Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller. They will conduct a free seminar for the community 6-9 p.m. today through Tuesday at Brawley Middle School. Topics include "Overcoming Bad Attitudes," " Accepting No as an Answer" and "Anger in Children."
Advance registration is required. Child care is available for those who register at www.peninsulabaptist.com or call 704-664-2958.