In May of this year, the Vermont running community lost Malcolm Plunkett a star runner and record holder for many Vermont high school events. GMAA Race Director Matt Solomon along with friends Brendan Copley and Olivia Plunkett have collaboratively organized a virtual 5K event in memory of Malcolm Plunkett:
What better way to celebrate Malcolm’s life than with an event that brings together the running community of Vermont and raises funds to help queer folx thrive and/or helps folx recover from addiction.
Here are some details: What: A virtual 5K XC challenge. When: The first weekend of August (1 & 2). Why: We want to celebrate Malcolm’s life by joining together, running hard, and supporting a good cause.
How: Since the event is virtual, we encourage you to find your favorite local XC course (NO TRACKS) and post up your best possible 5K time. If you are in Vermont, we encourage you to revisit some staple VTXC courses. We are working with HS coaches around the area to make sure the courses are available that weekend. If you’re not in VT, run your favorite 5K course wherever you are.
I’m very sorry to report that the GMAA Board has decided to cancel our Green Mountain Marathon for 2020. I realize this comes after a long string of other cancellations and we all regret the decision and share the disappointment. But we did not feel comfortable holding an event of this nature given the ongoing uncertainty around the COVID-19 pandemic. Our mission is to promote the health and fitness of our members and our community. And the best way to do that right now (and for the foreseeable future) is to continue social distancing and avoiding large group gatherings.
All pre-registered runners will receive another email in the coming days with options for handling their registration fees.
As our flagship event, the Green Mountain Marathon has traditionally been a breadwinner for the Club, and has helped fund some of our other events and charitable donations. Luckily the Club is in good standing financially thanks to a long history of prudent management and low operating costs. We will be in a good position to start holding races again when it is deemed safe to do so. But many of our neighbors are in very difficult situations. Unemployment is still at record high levels and too many Vermonters are facing food insecurity. If you are able to, please consider making a donation to your local food shelf or the Vermont Foodbank. Any amount helps.
I have created a GMAA fundraising team for the VT Foodbank. Please join me in a friendly fundraising competition and see how many meals we can provide to those in need. I’ve set an initial goal of $5,000. Let’s smash that goal together! Go to: https://fundraise.vtfoodbank.org/gmaa
Please stay healthy and keep looking out for each other.
As I’m sure you can imagine, this has been a very difficult season to do any kind of event planning. We were forced to cancel our first two club races of the year, and our May race, Pump it Up, will be a virtual event only. But there has been some good news from the State of Vermont this week. The number of new cases of COVID19 has been decreasing. We are hopeful that this trend will continue and the Stay Home order will be lifted on May 15th. If that’s the case and the Governor allows social gatherings of this type, our summer and fall events should be able to go ahead as scheduled. That being said, we can not guarantee anything at this point and don’t have any clear guidance from the government yet.
Our priority is always the health and safety of our runners, our volunteers, and our community. In light of all the uncertainty, the GMAA Board of Directors has decided to freeze all new registrations for our upcoming GMAA events for this year. If do we need to cancel or postpone any events, pre-registered runners will receive further communications from the race directors at that time. We are hopeful that this won’t be necessary.
As runners ourselves, we recognize the difficulty in planning a training schedule around races that may or may not happen. So please trust that we will do our very best to provide you with as much notice as possible. We will be in touch with you as more information becomes available and our summer schedule is solidified.
Thank you for patience and for all your support. Please stay healthy, keep running, and keep in touch.
Every single one of us is being affected by this pandemic in large ways and small ways and in some ways that we might not fully understand for years to come. But what is clear is that the most vulnerable members of our community will suffer the most. In light of this, the GMAA Board of Directors would like to announce the launch of our brand new e-commerce store in conjunction with a fundraiser.
For the rest of the month of April, the club will donate 200% of all proceeds from online sales to the Vermont Foodbank.
Please head over to our shop at gmaa.run/shop to check out our latest apparel options and place an order today! All prices include tax and shipping. Items will be mailed out once a week. Any questions can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
I hope you’re all staying healthy during this difficult time. One thing that really helps me is to remember that it will end, we will get through this. It might be weeks or months but we will endure and emerge a stronger community. The Board has some exciting news to share with you all about a new launch this week. Please check our channels Monday morning to learn more.
In the meantime, I want to amplify and expand on Coach Allen’s not-so-gentle reminders about how to stay safe and limit the spread of the coronavirus in our community:
Exercise is critical for mental health and maintaining our immune system, but GMAA does not recommend running in groups or in crowded areas during this pandemic. The Burlington Bike Path has gotten especially crowded lately and the 6-foot radius between people may not be possible or even sufficient if we are running and breathing heavily.
The CDC is now recommending that we wear cloth masks in public. Here’s a video from the Surgeon General demonstrating how easy it is to make one from an old t-shirt (finally a good use for all those race shirts we never wear!) https://youtu.be/tPx1yqvJgf4
Let’s see your race mask! Tag us on your social media posts and show the world how we are staying happy, healthy and fit and helping to fight this disease. And when you are out in public, please remember that you are an ambassador of the sport and of our club so give everyone else out there plenty of room and respect. We’re all in this together!
GMAA was founded over 50 years ago with a mission of promoting “good health, fitness, and friendship through participation in athletics and athletic competition.” As such, the health and safety of our race participants, volunteers, and surrounding communities is our top priority. In light of the recent developments around the COVID-19 pandemic, the Board of Directors has decided to cancel the Kaynor Sap Run event scheduled for March 22.
This was not a decision that was made lightly. Our world is in the midst of an unprecedented public health emergency and we each must take every precaution possible to limit the spread of the virus. The following links provide helpful information and resources regarding COVID-19:
We all hope this threat will pass soon so we can get on with our regularly scheduled race season. We will continue to monitor the situation and communicate updates on our website and by email as more details unfold. Pre-registered runners for the Sap Run will receive additional information in the coming days.
Thank you for your patience and understanding during this uncertain time.
If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact me directly. You can email me at email@example.com or call or text 802-318-7003.
President of Board of Directors
Green Mountain Athletic Association