Strides Running Store takes great pride in sponsoring events, getting out into our communities and helping local causes and charities. In 2018, Strides was involved in over a dozen local events and races. Store owner, Jeremy Deere, not only contributed to many of these events by providing prizes, he also joins many of the organizing committees, offering his race organizing experience and providing advice, in order to help make these races and events the best they can be. Strides’ staff are also encouraged to be actively involved in volunteering for charity races and events.
Thank you to the many Strides customers who have generously donated their used running shoes over the past 13 years. An estimated 500 pairs of running shoes per year are donated to CUPS (Calgary Urban Projects Society) and the Mustard Seed. As well, many pairs of gently worn shoes are waiting to be shipped to South Sudan through a local charity, Humantiy’s Promise. Used shoe donations can be dropped off at all three Strides locations.
Through our continued sponsorship of the Calgary High School Cross-country Series (each September and October), Strides donates 10 pairs of track spikes to the local High School that wins the Community Involvement Award (given to the school which has the largest increase in student participation year over year). To date, there have been five different high schools that have won this award.
For the past 13 years, Strides has been the proud running store sponsor of the Original St. Patrick's Day Road Race organized by the Calgary Roadrunners Club, raising funds for Diabetes Canada and CRR. Jeremy, Michelle Simonin (a Strides coach) and sit on the organizing committee for this race, which has raised over $100,000 since Strides became a sponsor.
Since the creation of the MitoCanada Foundation in 2009, Strides has provided support in any way possible - through the sale of Team Mito gear at the store, to sourcing shirts for various Team Mito events & races, to providing silent auction items for fundraising initiatives. In spring 2013, MitoCanada founder and president, Blaine Penny, came up with the idea of attempting a Guinness World Record for the fastest 'linked' marathon as a means of raising awareness for mitochondrial disease and funds for MitoCanada. Strides owner, Jeremy Deere, took an active role in organizing the initial Guinness World Record submission and recruiting the team members. The efforts paid off, as the ten-man 'Making Strides Towards a Mito Cure' team set a new Guinness World Record for a linked marathon, running 2:55:24. More importantly, the record attempt gained national media attention, raising much awareness of mitochondrial disease and bringing in over $136,000 in donations, over $40,000 of which was raised by the ten-man linked team (including Strides' Jeremy Deere).
Jeremy and Michelle are joined by Alan Cooper (a retired Strides employee) to organize the Stampede Road Race, which takes place annually on the first Sunday of Stampede. This race raises funds for CanPraxis, an Alberta charity which uses horse therapy to help veterans with PTSD. In addition, the race donates funds to local charities including KidSport Calgary, the Boy Scouts of Canada, Diabetes Canada, MitoCanada and Northern Star Mother’s Milk, among others. Over the past 10 years, the Stampede Road Race Society has donated over $120,000 to charity.
Seven years ago, Strides was approached by the Ronald McDonald House of Southern Alberta about becoming a sponsor of the Rock the House Run and helping with race logistics. We readily agreed, recognizing the importance of RMHSA in Calgary and area and the great service they provide for out-of-town families with kids at the Alberta Children's Hospital. During our involvement with the race, the Rock the House Run (now Hustle for the House has raised well over $1 million for the RMHSA. We are thrilled to continue this partnership into 2019 and beyond, raising funds for a great cause!