Social Distancing races to be held April 25

Many events and activities have been canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.


One event was a marathon in Nashville that Garden City resident Brandon Mumgaard was going to participate in on April 25.


Despite the stay-at-home order and the race being canceled, Mumgaard still wanted to run. He has been training since the beginning of the year, so he created the Social Distancing Races.


“I was on a run one day and I was like 'let's just still put on a race, so I'm going to make my own T-shirt and my own course and put it one Facebook, anybody wants to run, then they can run it,’ ” Mumgaard said.


The event consists of a 5K, a 10K, half marathon and a full marathon and will take place on April 25.


Mumgaard created courses online for all of the races, but said people don’t have to follow those courses, just “run, walk, bike, whatever you want to.”


“The main thing is just people creating their own course, going out and just running the distance for the event that they want to do and to upload the information —a lot of people have an iPhone or smartphone that tracks the distance they ran or their steps — and emailing it,” he said. “We're just going to compile the results at the end of it and ... like it would be a regular race like you would have the standings.”


Ashton Maxfield, a friend of Mumgaard who has helped spread the word about the event, said anyone from anywhere at any time on April 25 can participate in the races.


They don’t even have to be a regular runner, Maxfield said.


“It’s really open to anyone,” he said. “One of the people who registered already told me that they were planning to run with their 14-month-old in a stroller and they just wanted to have something to run and to look forward to, focus on.”


They have people from Garden City, Salina, Hutchinson, Huguton and other cities in Kansas who are participating as well as people from Nebraska and one from Nashville, Tenn.


“People will run on their own time, they'll time it themselves and then turn it in,” Maxfield said. “That way everyone's social distanced, but it gives everybody something positive to still motivate them to still exercise and still get outside.”


Maxfield said it’s cool that people from all over are participating.


“It's neat that a lot of people are doing it even though we're not going to be running at the same time or same place,” he said. “I feel a kind of camaraderie and solidarity with all these other people who have registered.”


Mumgaard said that for him the event is just about getting people outside and to find joy during this time.


“Everybody I feel like is probably feeling cooped up in their homes,” he said. “It's really just an event to kind of have humor with the whole situation, try to find the best in it, but also getting people outside, get some fresh air and hopefully keep our sanity throughout all these times.”


Maxfield said he loved the idea of the event when he heard about it and thought it was a great idea.


Mumgaard took something negative when his race was canceled and turned it into something positive for himself and others, Maxfield said.


All of the funds from the races will go toward helping frontline workers.


Mumgaard said they are working with St. Catherine Hospital to determine how to allocate funds, but they will be going toward “frontline workers here in Garden City.”


For more information on the races, go to socialdistancingrace.com or visit its Facebook page at facebook.com/events/221930875684618/.


To register for the race, email Ashton Maxfield at ashton@masterplancommunications.com.