The Spark Foundation
The second beneficiary of the Hero Half Marathon that we’re highlighting is The Spark Foundation!
(If you missed the first post about the Fayetteville Public Education Foundation, check here!)
The Spark Foundation (formerly known as Cow Paddy) mission is to positively impact our community by providing access to health and fitness opportunities and financially supporting academic excellence.
The Spark Foundation was founded by a few of Fayetteville’s own in 2010 who wanted to bring back the Cow Paddy Run in Gulley Park from their childhood. The Foundation has blossomed to host not only the Cow Paddy Run every spring, but also running clubs in local elementary schools and even the Hero Half Marathon!
The Cow Paddy Run is always held the Friday before Spring Break in Gulley Park to encourage children to be active. Earlier this year over 550 people gathered (despite the spring drizzle) to run a 5K and celebrate being healthy. Butterfield Elementary had over 200 runners and won the attendance contest- winning $2,000 for their school! In addition, the Community Creative Center hosted a design contest for the race tee and the winner received $100!
Since their inception, The Spark Foundation has donated over $70,000 to local nonprofits and public schools. The Spark Foundation was also influential in raising over $1 million to expand Gulley Park by 14 acres- keeping this beautiful park right in the center of Fayetteville.
Click here to download their one pager. Browse through pictures from the 2016 Cow Paddy Run below. Thanks for encouraging our children to be happy and healthy Spark!