Thursday, June 13, 2024

First Annual Mai Blumenlauf was a run for everyone

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LEAVENWORTH – The first annual Mai Blumenlauf, or May Flower Run, kicked off with over 200 participants this Mother’s Day.

“I thought the day went really well. I really loved the energy of having it downtown with all the people,” said Lynda Finegold-Brine, a co-founder of the event’s organizer, TedDriven.

Runners and walkers started and finished at the downtown gazebo, running through the heart of town and along the river. While many sported activewear, some donned flowers and Bavarian attire in the spirit of Mai Fest. Every runner and walker was awarded with a cowbell.

Every year, the Chamber of Commerce puts on the Mother’s Day 5k, which raises money for Cascade Medical Foundation. This year, however, the Chamber of Commerce partnered with TedDriven, a group that organizes running events such as the Wenatchee Valley Marathon and the Leavenworth Marathon.

“It’s cool that they did this race this year, because usually it’s just the half-marathon [and marathon] in the fall,” said half-marathon runner Jennifer Goebel of Leavenworth. “It was a really well organized event.”

Mai Blumenlauf, tagged “a run for everyone,” was inclusive of all ages and abilities, offering the original 5k, but also including an option to participate in a 10k or half-marathon. 

Just as in years past, proceeds of 5k registration went towards Cascade Medical Foundation, but partnering with TedDriven also meant supporting cutting-edge cancer research.

The company started nearly 20 years ago, motivated by running, community, anc cancer research. Ted and Lynda Finegold and Ian and Wendy Crossland organized their first Wenatchee Valley Marathon in 2005, raising money for cancer research in honor of Ian’s mom, who had breast cancer. Ted was diagnosed with cancer in 2006, then died from the disease in 2010. 

Now, named after Ted, TedDriven makes substantial donations to the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center at Columbia University every year. 

“I would definitely say that is a motivation for us because that really feels good for us to give to cancer research…Personally, it impacts us, and we know that it impacts everybody else. It really drives us for that reason to keep going,” said Finegold.

TedDriven will host the Leavenworth Marathon and half-marathon on Oct. 5, 2024. More information about TedDriven and the cancer research it supports can be found at teddriven.com.

Taylor Caldwell: 509-433-7276 or taylor@ward.media

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