This will be the 11th year for this unique event that brings military members and their families together with veterans and the community. This year’s Run includes a five-kilometre and 10-kilometre race and a half-marathon. In addition, there are two challenges for participants wanting to push themselves. The Ortona Challenge combines the five-kilometre and 10-kilometre events while honouring the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Ortona, and in the Commander’s Challenge, participants complete both the five-kilometre and half marathon events.
Presented by BMO Bank of Montreal, the Canada Army Run has been dubbed one of the most inspiring events in the country. It is a time when civilians, Canadian Armed Forces personnel and runners of all ages and abilities can run, walk and roll together to show their pride as Canadians and as runners.
The inspiration for the Run came in 2006 when retired lieutenant general Stuart Beare participated in the U.S. Army Ten-Miler in Washington D.C. The first Army Run was held in Ottawa on Sept. 21, 2008, when 7,000 civilians and military personnel took to the streets of the National Capital Region. The event set a new record for the largest number of entrants for an inaugural Canadian run. Since then the Canada Army Run has raised more than $2.6 million in support of Soldier On and Support Our Troops Fund – two Canadian Armed Forces financial support programs that provide assistance to ill and injured soldiers and military families in need.
The Army Run has become a real festive affair. In addition to the run, there is the Juno Challenge Kids Obstacle Course, military equipment static displays, the Running Room Sports Expo, live performances and entertainment.
The event also pays tribute to proud moments in our nation’s military history. Last year marked the 100th anniversary of Vimy Ridge. This year will observe the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Ortona, Italy. The month-long campaign in December 1943 resulted in more than 2,300 Canadian casualties, including 502 killed.
For more information check out the Canada Army Run website at: www.armyrun.ca.