Half K race to raise money for food bank


Afton Prater, Staff Reporter

People of all ages are invited to participate in the St. Paddy’s Day Half K hosted by Iron Horse Brewery on March 16 at 2 p.m. This event is a combination of a run, activities and entertainment. While The St. Paddy’s Day Half K is fun for the community, it also seeks to help the community by raising money for FISH food bank. The goal is to raise $10,000.

The race takes about eight minutes to run, according to the ‘Sportsballing Half K’ press release. There will be four different groups of races. There will also be many activities after the race, such as live music and games. “Hair Nation,” an 80s rock band, will be taking the stage after the run. Dakota Cafe and Iron Horse Brewery will provide food options including hot dogs, pretzels and nachos. Iron Horse Brewery Event Planner Aimee Bach explains the importance of this event in ‘The Sportsballing Half K’ press release. Bach stated that she is fascinated by the amount of people that come from various parts of the state to participate in this event, which helps showcase the community coming together to support our neighbors in need.

Registration is available the day of the race, but tickets can also be purchased ahead of time at www.stpaddydayhalfk.com. Tickets are offered for adults 21 and over ($25), people 20 and under ($5), and for groups of people over 21 of four or more($20). Since the event takes place on St. Patrick’s Day, participants are encouraged to wear themed outfits.A participant in the race last year, Aubrey White, is a five year mug club member with Iron Horse Brewery. White expressed what she is excited about for the race this year.

“In addition to being able to hang out with my friends in downtown Ellensburg, I’m looking forward to a few things including the pit stops along the run, the food specials that are sure to surprise and obviously the beer,” White said. “It is a great downtown event that anyone from full families with kids to high endurance runners can enjoy.”

Peggy Morache is the Executive Director at FISH food bank. She said that because of the Saint Paddy’s Day Half K, the food bank received over $5,000 in 2017 and received closer to $6,000 in 2018. The money raised at the race will help support various programs and run general operations at the food bank. The food bank provides meals for more than 32,000 Kittitas county residents, as well as providing 14,000 people with groceries,  annually. Morache explained the positive impact that the race has on the food bank.

“It means not only the financial support, which of course is wonderful, but it’s also a good opportunity for us to be out in the community and to talk to people about what we do and how many people we serve in Kittitas county,” Morache said. “We have a huge impact on this community.”

The food bank is open Monday through Friday, providing lunches for the community Monday and Wednesday and senior nutrition meals on Tuesday and Thursday. Meals on Wheels is open every day of the week and the food bank’s ‘bread room’  is open five days a week. Morache wants people to know that the food bank aims to support the residents of Kittitas County and that they are neighbors supporting neighbors.

The St. Paddy’s Day Half K is going to be filled with entertainment, activities, food, beverages and of course exercise. The event has received praise in the past, leaving participants with a will to return and a memorable experience that is built on community support and engagement.