With the first race dating back to 1894, Around the Bay Road Race is the oldest race of its kind in North America. While maintaining its long-standing community tradition, along with an incredible roster of athletes including Olympians and Boston Marathon winners, the event is constantly evolving. Since 2005, Around the Bay 2014 has been a charity event with funds raised supporting St. Joseph’s Health Care Foundation. As part of the event’s ongoing partnership with the Foundation, Around the Bay has further extended its reach this year to include a social media team.
In the weeks leading up to Around the Bay, the social media team has been sharing their training tips, challenges and highlights through conversations on Twitter and Facebook. This team of 13 runners offers up a diverse blend of running expertise from seasoned athletes to first-time racers, like Kate Goodwin a Hamilton-based wellness communications coordinator, and running newbie. According to Goodwin, it’s been a great way to create a community and consistent interaction on social media. Along with supporting each other Goodwin says the team contributes a consistent level of conversation. “While I might tweet something, I’ve got fifteen other people who are going to retweet it and that gives you strength in your voice.” Along with sharing training advice, the team has offered up recipes and served as a source of inspiration for fellow team members and other runners, as they share in their journey towards the Around the Bay. “Reading people’s personal journey’s with running has been most encouraging to me,” says Goodwin adding that the variety of voices has contributed to the team’s success.
Thinking about joining a social media team for your next race? Whether you’re a seasoned pro or it’s your first event, as long as you’re open to sharing your skills, experience, triumphs and fears, there’s probably a place for you on the team. As more and more events look to increase their profile within the larger communities, many may be looking towards establishing social media teams as a way to make the sport more accessible to others. In fact, for organizers getting a new event up and running, having a social media team can be a cost-effective way of in creating awareness and excitement. Interested in joining the conversation with the Around the Bay team on Twitter or Facebook? Look for the hashtags #aroundthebay and #hamont.