JEFFERSON, Iowa, May 9, 2018 -- The sixth annual Market to Market Relay Iowa this Saturday, May 12, will have about 3,000 runners on 350 teams from 20 states.
The 75-mile relay race starts in the early morning from the Mahanay Memorial Carillon Tower on the courthouse square in Jefferson, and ends with a celebration in the heart of downtown Des Moines from about mid-afternoon into the evening.
The relay uses the full length of the Raccoon River Valley Trail on the “south loop.”
This all day running event consists of teams with six to eight members. Team members rotate running, hopping in a team vehicle, resting, and then repeating to cover the route. Runners take on two to three stages that range from three to five miles each, covering 75 miles and 18 exchange points.
The route is strategically mapped out to provide scenic views with varied running environments such as the RRVT, paved streets and gravel back roads. Runners will pass through the towns of Jefferson, Cooper, Yale, Panora, Linden, Redfield, Adel, Waukee, Clive and Des Moines.
Market to Markey Relay Iowa combines running in beautiful central Iowa landscapes, outrageous costumes, a memorable journey with friends, and a post-race celebration at the Iowa Tap Room in downtown Des Moines.
“It is our passion to create unique running experiences for both the elite runner and the casual, fun runner,” says Ben Cohoon, Market to Market race director. “We are thrilled to welcome 350 teams participating again this year, with many teams having run all six years. Due to the magnitude of this event it takes over 250 volunteers to make Market to Market Relay Iowa happen. As a thank you, we make donations back to these local community groups and non-profits that make the event possible.”
Since 2013, Market to Market Relay Iowa has donated over $80,000 to local community groups and non-profit organizations that supported the race. In 2018, the race will donate over $18,000 to community and non-profit groups, bringing the 6-year total to over $98,000.
On Saturday, “M2M Relay Iowa” will feature eight different waves of runners leaving every 30 minutes from the bell tower in Jefferson. Waves will begin at 5:45 a.m. with the last wave leaving at 9:15 a.m. The fastest teams with the elite runners will be in the last couple of waves to start.
At the post-race celebration at the Iowa Taproom, physical therapists from Athletico will be on site for stretching and free runner evaluations. The celebration will feature food, drinks and music along with awards and team results.
You can learn more about the relay at www.M2MRelay.com.
Market to Market Relay Iowa is produced by Pink Gorilla Events. Pink Gorilla Events is an independent event production company based in Lincoln, Neb., and founded in 2008. Events include the Market to Market Relay Series in Nebraska, Iowa and Ohio; BRIN Running Series; “The Good Life Halfsy” half-marathon; Early Bird 10-Mile Run; Leprechaun Chase 10K; “Cornfield Cornfield 10K” and “Harvest Moon Hustle 10K.”
Sponsors of this year’s M2M Relay Iowa are Athletico Physical Therapy, Leinenkugel’s, Fresh Fit Meals, Community Choice, Bulu Box, Casey’s General Stores, Image Inflators, Straub Marketing, Heartland Soles, Fleet Feet Sports, the Iowa Taproom, Kyle’s Bikes, Monarch Materials Group Inc., and Fitness Sports.
The “charities of choice” for M2M Relay Iowa are the Raccoon River Valley Trail and Above + Beyond Cancer.