The Sharks Foundation kicked-off the 2016-17 season by hosting its annual 5K, 10K and Rosendin Electric Kids Fun Run at Fitness Faceoff powered by Kaiser Permanente on September 25. The fourth annual celebration of exercise and fundraising hosted more than 4,000 participants and volunteers and netted over $52,000.
Runners and walkers were greeted at SAP Center with an interactive warm-up courtesy of Sara Bousfield from Kaiser Permanente. Soon after, San Jose Sharks television broadcasters, Randy Hahn and Jamie Baker, who also ran the race, along with in-game announcer, Danny Miller, helped send everyone on their way.
As participants crossed the finish line, they made their way over to the Health Festival, which showcased various health and wellness vendors, a Kids Zone with inflatables, face painters, a Kaiser Permanente obstacle course and various giveaways throughout the fundraiser.
A brigade of therapy dogs, including a 2-year-old golden retriever named after the Sharks own Patrick Marleau, from the Valley Human Society's Canine Comfort program, were some of the first on-hand to welcome the runners into the Health Festival after they crossed the finish line. The Waffle Amore food truck and Zoom Caffe coffee cart were also on site to serve discounted food and beverages to runners throughout the morning.
This season the Foundation saw its individual fundraising efforts grow by nearly $10,000 with Fitness Faceoff participants creating pages in which their family and friends could sponsor them. Hahn supported fundraisers, by inviting the Top-3 Fitness Faceoff powered by Kaiser Permanente fundraisers on a private run, followed by a lunch in which Baker joined. This year's Top-3 fundraisers were:
1st Place: F. Franco with $1,180
2nd Place: W. Ng with $1,006
3rd Place: L. Scotch with $1,005
The Top-3 finishers for the Men's 5K completed their run less than one minute apart with Alan Alarcon, Michael Huynh and Cesar Lira finishing 1st-3rd, respectively, while Darci Cassinelli, Tara Carreira and Lidia Santos rounded out the Top-3 for the Women's 5K.
In the Men's 10K, Michael Garaventa completed his trek in 32 minutes and 24 seconds, with Bihama Vedaste and Jose Pina clocking in just seconds behind. Mei-Tung Chen of San Francisco's time of 39 minutes and 41 seconds was 1st place for the Women's 10K and Merlin Vassigh and Bitsy Bilek finished 2nd and 3rd, respectively.
In addition, the first 2,000 guests to register for the 5K, 10K or Rosendin Electric Kids Fun Run received a voucher redeemable for a $10 Sharks Upper Level game ticket to any one of the first three preseason home games.
The Sharks Foundation would like to acknowledge Fitness Faceoff's presenting sponsor, Kaiser Permanente, Kids Fun Run Sponsor, Rosendin Electric, Bib sponsor, Silver Creek Sportsplex, Volunteer Sponsor, Deloitte & Touche, LLP, Shirt Sponsor, Bowlmor San Jose, and Silver Sponsors, Aquafina, CommonWealth Credit Union, The Old Spaghetti Factory, SAP, Safeway Inc., Signs Now, as well as Media Partners, KFOX 98.5, Q102.1, 94.5 KBAY, Mix 106.5, and 99.7 [NOW!].