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5 Quirky Fundraising Ideas for Runners

Here's our out-there guide to fun-filled charity event ideas

If you

Running - it’s the one thing that you can do at any time, any pace, anywhere. If you’re lucky enough to be a keen runner and don’t get tired out too easily, it might be time to pay your sweat to society and get your running shoes on for a good cause. That’s right, we’re talking about fundraising! Sporty Spice or not, there is a long list of unique, sprint-inspired ways to earn precious sponsors for your chosen charity.

That’s right, we’re not just talking about running your ‘jog’ standard marathon for money. Think outside the box and throw your body and ‘sole’ into your next fundraising event and watch the donations roll in. To help you get creative with your next charitable affair, we’ve compiled a list of our five favourite fundraiser ideas, for those of you who spend most of your time on the track. Ready, set, run!

1. Opt for an obstacle course

What’s life without a few obstacles? If you love a challenge and want to jazz up your next running-related charity event, surely a fun-filled obstacle course is a second to run idea (see what we did there?).

Whether it’s a messy mud run or a race generously filled with obstacle-inspired mayhem, an obstacle run is a great way for you runners to do what you do best - all whilst fundraising for your chosen charity. Take inspiration from organisations like Tough Mudder and try and make the course as dangerously fun as possible.

If you’re struggling for equipment, why not call on the aid of your local high school and snag a few beanbags and hurdles? Not only will you save on cost, but you’ll likely gather some interest through the students and teachers too! To make sure you make money, simply charge a participation fee. You could also ask those who come to watch the chaos unfold to donate a small sum towards the charitable cause, too. You’ll be sure to be smashing those sponsorship targets in record time.

2. Go all out with an ultramarathon

Do you think you have what it takes to go the extra mile? Reckon you can tackle a little long-distance running? If you’re confident in your abilities and want to take on the ultimate challenge, then an Ultramarathon is the fundraising idea for you.

Granted, we’re not talking about any old marathon. You’ll need to seriously prepare yourself for this one. For those of you who consider yourself serious runners, an ultramarathon will test you both physically and mentally - it’s the ultimate endurance test, after all, so be sure to keep this in mind before committing.

Cause a stir for the crowd and summon those sponsors by challenging yourself and your fellow participants to run a whopping 60 miles in one day. You could even throw in an exciting prize for the person who completes the marathon first! Trust us, a little shock factor and an extreme distance are sure to encourage donators to offer up the big bucks quick as a dash - mark our words.

3. Have a fun run in fancy dress

Who doesn’t love a little fancy dress? Any event can be made a little more exciting with a feather boa or two - so throwing on a costume for cash is a no brainer. Let’s face it, nothing quite beats running a sweaty marathon in a sequined suit or a furry onesie, does it?

Looking for fancy dress ideas? Check out the 2018 London marathons wacky outfits embraced by runners article by the BBC.

Spread the message far and wide and ask people to donate in order to participate, as well as requesting that people pay a small fee for watching the race, too. You could even take your fundraising to the next level and conjure up some more cash by asking people to pay to vote for who they think is the best dressed.

Crowning a winner at the finish line will be great fun for all! Obviously, we suggest trialling running in your costume before the big day - the last thing you need is a few too many uncomfortable laps in latex or leather.

Make your event unique by asking people to adhere to a theme of your choice. From your favourite fantasy franchise to childhood heroes, ask participants to get extra creative with their characters and share it all on social media. There’s sure to be some great snaps from the day!

4. Organise an ode to the Olympics

Have you been inspired by this years Tokyo Olympics? Ever wanted to run like the likes of Mo Farah or Usain Bolt? You can, quite literally, bolt straight over those all-important donation targets by organising your own Olympic race.

Get inspired by the games of the past and go all out with decorations - making it as true to the real deal is sure to drum up some donations from the crowd, as well as excitement. Spacing out your day into slots will help add a little organisation to the day too, whilst also giving you the chance to put on an exciting medal ceremony for the athletes taking part.

Hosting a mock Olympic games is a great way to bring your local community together in aid of a good cause, all whilst opening up a long list of opportunities to fundraise more money. From selling healthy snacks to charging an admission fee for attendees and participants, you’ll be spoilt for sponsors. When it comes to charity, it really is all for ‘run’ and ‘run’ for all.

5. Rally up sponsors with a relay

Finally, we come to an event that will relay get those sponsors in. Yep, you guessed it - it’s time to host a classic, a relay race! What’s better than building up your local community with a little team spirit?

Gather a team of running fanatics like yourself and take turns in completing a 5k stint, before passing the baton on to the next runner in line. Your teammates don’t need to be Olympic level athletes, but do make sure the track has water stops for those members of the team who might need a breather or two!

Once you’ve made an order for the day, call on participants to donate a fee for participating and encourage onlookers to also pay a fee in support of your cause. Ask a local experience centre - such as a swimming centre or an adventure park - to donate a team-centred prize for the winners. An adventurous prize is sure to flood your fundraiser with interest in no time.

So there you have it - our five fundraising ideas for runners, that are a little different from your everyday marathon. Guess all there’s left to say is happy running! That’s a lap, ladies and gents.

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