HOKA Northern Arizona Elite to Partner with the Ferguson Twilight Run
The professional distance running team will serve as ambassadors for the longtime Ferguson, MO road race
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – February 11, 2021 – HOKA ONE ONE Northern Arizona Elite has announced a partnership with the Ferguson Twilight Run, an annual spring road race in Ferguson, MO featuring a 10mile, a 10k, and a 5k, as well as an entire week of community events for all ages and abilities.
Ferguson is located just outside of Saint Louis, an area with many ties to the HOKA NAZ Elite team. Its newest member, Julia Kohnen, grew up one town over, in nearby Florissant. Head Coach Ben Rosario was born and raised in Saint Louis and co-owned Big River Running Company, a local run specialty store, from 2006-2012. The store’s race management company has worked with the Ferguson Twilight Run since its inception in 2010.
Rosario said there are a variety of reasons he reached out to one of the Run’s organizers, Dwayne T. James, about a possible partnership.
“2020 was a year that forced our athletes to do a lot of soul searching about exactly why it is that they do what they do, and not only what they want to get out of the sport of running but also what they can do to give back,” Rosario said. “When I suggested a partnership with an inclusive non-profit organization whose mission is to promote health and fitness, that introduces more and more people to the sport of running each year, in a metro area where we have so many loyal fans, they jumped at the opportunity.”
The pro bono partnership involves the HOKA NAZ Elite team and its athletes promoting the Ferguson Twilight Run Virtual Race to running fans across the globe, as well as assisting with planning for the in-person event each May. HOKA NAZ Elite athletes will attend the race annually, engage with participants, assist with the kids’ run, and promote the sport in any way they can.
James said since 2010 the Ferguson Twilight Run has provided an opportunity for runners of all levels to come together for the cause to support community while encouraging each other every step of the way.
“Our goal has been to provide an experience where seasoned runners are able to showcase their expertise and those yet to experience the joy of crossing a finish line see the possibilities that come with running and walking,” James said. “We are so happy to partner with the HOKA NAZ Elite team to be able to share this vision to an extended audience while still focusing on community.”
The Ferguson Twilight Run began as a local 5k in 2010 and has grown into an award winning premier event including a 5k, a 10k, a 10-mile, and a 1-mile fun run with more than 15,000 total participants since inception. The Ferguson Twilight Run incorporates the historic neighborhoods, the diverse community and the unique history of the City of Ferguson along with a collaborative spirit. Previous sponsors of the run include Emerson Electric (a Fortune 500 Company), Negwer Materials (a Ferguson Business for more than 100 years), Express Scripts and Centene Corporation. Additional collaborators include Sportsprint and the Ferguson Brewing Company — a great place for a post-race drink. The Ferguson Twilight Run includes cheer stations along its hilly route with a free concert during its post-race event. The Run benefits local nonprofits providing programs and events that showcase the enjoyable, healthy, and sustainable aspects of fitness activities.
For more info visit fergtwilightrun.com.