Hundreds of runners are expected to join the September 27, 2020 MRC/MEF Run for Education – as the 18th annual signature fundraiser for the Martinez Education Foundation goes virtual. Organizers of the annual run, which supports schools in the Martinez Unified School District, moved the event from Martinez streets to a virtual event because of uncertainty about when large public gatherings will be allowed to resume. Because of the virtual nature of the event, people from all over the world can participate in the 18th Annual MRC/MEF Run for Education. Since 2003, the annual fundraiser has raised $925,000 dollars for MEF, and this year’s theme is Run to a Million.
The Run is the primary fundraiser for the Martinez Education Foundation. Since 1985, MEF has distributed grants to teachers for a variety of educational resources, including books, music, art and STEAM education materials. With reduced State funding this year for K-12, Martinez Unified is counting on community support for classroom supplies.
Katie Collins, an Art Teacher at Martinez Junior High and Vicente Martinez High School, shared, “Through MEF’s generous grants I was able to get a new MacBook Air this spring. It has become the most necessary thing in my teaching arsenal during this Shelter in Place/Virtual Teaching. I have been able to use the iMovie software that came with the computer to create all my instructional videos for my students. I even created a YouTube channel.” There is no way I could have accomplished this before without MEF’s help.”
Runners and walkers of all ages from around the world may choose either the 5k or 10k option. “Race Day” is September 27, 2020 but all have a week to design their own race and set their own pace! Those who wish to report their times have until October 3 to log it into the run website. MEF wants to keep the spirit of the community race alive, and everyone will be encouraged to post pictures using race hashtag, #mrcmefrun, for all to see and enjoy! To register for the event, go to https://runsignup.com/Race/CA/Martinez/MRCMEFRunforEducation
Run for Education Race Director Jack Funk commented, “Although we regret not being able to host this traditional community event in a gathered public setting, we are excited to renew the historic support for our students in this innovative way. We look forward to seeing what the creative spirit of the community will produce in this new virtual format.”
Alhambra High School Senior Alyssa Christensen designed this year’s student logo contest, and her design will be featured on promotional materials and run t-shirts.
Martinez Refining Company, (MRC) underwrites the cost of the run, and all the proceeds go directly to MEF. The company will also match run sponsorships up to the first $20,000. This is MRC’s first year sponsoring the run, having purchased the refinery from Shell on February 1.
Martinez Refining Company’s Community Relations Manager, Ann Notarangelo, is looking forward to this year’s run, “What makes Martinez special, is the collective support for our community, and especially for our students and teachers. The Run for Education is one of many ways we put our values into action. Our MRC volunteers are looking forward to carrying on our traditional run, with a virtual twist.”