Business sponsors are being sought for an event that celebrates the Veterans Day holiday and gives athletes a chance to run along the American Riviera.
June Parks has been bringing a popular South Coast tradition “back on its feet.” That’s the Santa Barbara Veterans Day Half Marathon.
Parks has been involved with the event for the past nine years, but in the wake of the recession a few years ago, the half-marathon took a turn for the worse. She is getting it back on the right track.
Over the years, the event each time has drawn between 2,000 to 8,000 runners along Santa Barbara streets. This year, it will take start at Chase Palm Park and travel up Shoreline Drive and through the Mesa this year on Nov. 11.
In years past, aircraft flyovers and 181 U.S. flags were featured along the route monitored by eight volunteer directors, Parks said.
The for-profit half-marathon is Parks’ business, but it also raises money for local charities. Runners can find their own charity as a sponsor or the event organizers can suggest one, Parks said. Business sponsors still are being sought and runners can still register at http://www.sbmarathon.com/sponsors
A graduate of the Women’s Economic Ventures program, Parks ran track at Brandeis University before coming to Santa Barbara 14 years ago for family reasons.
She worked as an assistant track coach at Santa Barbara City College from 2003 to 2005. After growing up near Boston, Parks said, she was inspired by the annual running event there.