Runners not registering for the Ports of Auckland Round the Bays are literally taking money from charity.
That's the message from organisers in the build up to the next 8.4km fun run on March 10, 2013.
Fairfax Media, owner of Suburban Newspapers and the Auckland City Harbour News, co-owns the popular event with the Auckland Joggers Club and donates the proceeds from registered entries to selected children's charities.
Around $120,000 went to Kidz First Children's Hospital, Make-A-Wish New Zealand, Garden to Table Trust, Child Cancer Foundation and Fairfax First Books after last year's run.
Around 70,000 people complete the run between downtown Auckland and St Heliers but many fail to pay the $15 registration fee that makes donations possible.
Just 42,000 runners registered last year and Fairfax Media chief executive Allen Williams is keen to see that number go skyward in 2013.
"It would be fantastic if more people understood that their registration fees go to such worthwhile endeavours," he says.
"The more participants that register, the more funds we have to allocate to deserving charities."
Registrations for the latest run open on November 16 at roundthebays.co.nz and entrants will be encouraged to raise money for one of the selected charities via Fundraise Online when they sign up.
Mr Williams says registered runners will help make a real difference.
"I'm really encouraging people to get behind charities by registering to take part," he says. "Don't run for nothing!"
Round the Bays was started by the Auckland Joggers Club in 1972 with 1200 participants.
It will celebrate its 41st anniversary next year as one of the world's largest fun runs and New Zealand's biggest mass participation sporting event.
Sponsors alongside Suburban Newspapers and Ports of Auckland include the Fairfax owned Sunday Star-Times.
Applications for Ports of Auckland Round the Bays funding close on November 16 at noon.
They are open to registered New Zealand children's charities and can be made online at roundthebays.co.nz.
Applicants must outline specific tangible projects in need of funding and projects must be designed to benefit as many children as possible.
The chosen charities will be announced on December 3.
Around $120,000 was distributed among five charities as a result of the 2012 event.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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