The Akron Marathon hopes to ramp up the fun for local businesses and their employees this year with its new Corporate Cup Challenge, which will crown a winner based on a scoring system that emphasizes participation, volunteerism and charitable giving.
The Sept. 27 event will encourage companies to recruit employees and their families to race in the marathon, half-marathon and team relay; volunteer in a variety of ways on race day; and raise money for a cause.
Points will be accrued in each category, and a single winning organization will be awarded the official Corporate Cup, engraved with the company name, to display for one year, as well as a replica trophy to keep.
The challenge has a ready-made audience. Perhaps 75 percent of the marathon’s popular five-person team relays already come from companies and organizations, Marathon Executive Director Anne Bitong said.
The marathon has always encouraged companies to take advantage of the event for their corporate health and wellness programs, but this challenge adds a twist.
“We’d like them to help them up the ante in a new way” by stressing volunteerism and supporting a charity, Bitong said.
Giving back to the Akron area is part of the marathon’s three-pronged mission — the other two priorities being heath and wellness, and local economic development — and Bitong said the Corporate Cup Challenge could help the marathon meet its goal of having generated $1 million for charity by 2015.
“To date we have raised over $400,000 in our 12-year history, so we’re hoping over the next two years we can say we’ve given $1 million back,” she said.
The Corporate Challenge Cup is sponsored by Sterling Jewelers Inc., the Akron-based national retail jeweler.
Lynn Ahlers, a Sterling Jewelers vice president, said the company is committed to “making a positive impact within our community, and we look forward to a fun, healthy competition that gives back to the city of Akron.”
Companies interested in taking part in the Corporate Cup Challenge should complete the application form found at akronmarathon.org/CorporateCupChallenge by by August 1.
For additional information, call Katie Kline at 330-434-2786.