A letter from the President of Final Stretch, Mark Bongers:
In my humble opinion, we are just now coming into the best time of the year. Now is a time of giving thanks for all that we have in life, and I wanted to take a moment to personally thank each and every runner or multisport athlete that participated in one of our races during the 2015 season. Last year was a good one for Final Stretch and that success has much to do with the great athletes and supporters that choose to join us at our events. We could not do this without each and every one of you making the personal choice to support one of our events by either participating, sponsoring or volunteering.
Everyone here at Final Stretch is dedicated to making sure our participants have the best race experience possible. We spend countless hours making sure that our events are safe and that each runner or multisport athlete is well taken care of before and after the race. Your feedback is a valuable and has allowed us build on our successes and to make improvements as we move forward. Our commitment is to QUALITY. We want to make sure you get to the start line ready for the event, that your event goes the way you want it to go, and that you have a great finish and post-race experience. I personally have and still do run many races as well as coach long distance runners in high school sports. I love running and truly have a passion for the sport! Many people say I live and breathe running, and come to think of it, I may be a little obsessive at times. But I am okay with that because it truly is my passion and I live it daily. The question I ask many people is “What is your reason or your joy with running? Find that and you will go farther and enjoy running longer than you could ever imagine”.
One of the aspects of Final Stretch that I am most proud of is that we try to keep our race costs effective and for our events to be run for good reasons. Yes, we are a for profit company, but we do many things to help the communities we are in. We have numerous high school sports teams help out at the races and we give money back to their programs (Over $15,000 each year). We have a great charity partner in MOCA (Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Alliance) for the Unleash the SHE, with 10% to 15% of the runners fees going back to MOCA, an organization that is doing great things for women. We also try to limit the races and control the growth so we can make sure that the finish lines are manageable and there are post-race goodies for all the runners.
So in conclusion, thank you so much for being part of the Final Stretch family and we hope that we see you again at one of our events. It has been our pleasure to put on these events for you and we hope that your upcoming holiday season brings you LOTS of joy. Be safe, run strong, and find the passion in your life!