Philanthropist Curtis Hargrove is putting his running skills to the test of time, as he pledges to run 24 hours straight for KidSport Bonnyville. When the ‘Cold Lake Runner’, as he’s affectionately known, heard of KidSport’s financial woes he knew he had to do something, “sports was a major part of my life growing up,” says the runner.
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It was kind of serendipitous between Curtis and Lakeland Connect, “I remember when I texted you (Jena Colbourne) to ask what was going on with KidSport and you responded ‘why don’t you do a runathon?’. That was exactly what I was thinking. So, together Lakeland Connect and I approached the Centennial Centre, who immediately jumped on board and welcomed me. KidSport was ecstatic and it was meant to be.”
Next Curtis and Lakeland Connect approached the local middle schools, Dr. Brosseau and HE Bourgoin, “the kids are amazing, they jumped on board right away and they want to help!” Curtis and Lakeland Connect help pep rallies at both of the schools to get the kids excited for the runathon, “running is really mental. If I can get some people out there with me to cheer me on or run beside me, it’s really going to make the difference.” Kids have already started to pledge to run 24 minutes with Curtis as he takes on 24 hours. “Those kids are so great. It’s fantastic how much support the schools have shown us so far.”
Curtis says he hopes music will keep him going through the midnight hours, “I still have the same iPod I had when I ran across Canada. I don’t even know what’s on it; it’s so random. I’ll be listening to a rock song and all of a sudden Justin Bieber comes on.” Admittedly, Curtis has never ran for 24 hours straight and the most he’s done in one day is 88 kilometres, but he is very confident he can do it. “I just think of the kids and how we can help them, that’s my main motivation.”
Curtis says running was a natural passion for him, “I look at my grandfather and he always raised money for Terry Fox over the years. I kinda wanted to follow in my grandfather’s footsteps. When I was 15 I ran my first marathon. Right after that I thought, why don’t I take my love for running and my passion for helping other and put it together.”
Taking his passion to the highways, Curtis has ran across Canada for the Stollery Children’s Hospital, to California to spread the message of a children’s hospital charity based out of British Columbia and he’s even walked from Cold Lake to Edmonton in high heels for Walk a Mile in Her Shoes.
This time around he chose KidSport Bonnyville because he had heard their funds ran dry. “Bonnyville has always supported me, so I wanted to give back to them. I know there’s been a lot of love from Bonnyville for me, this is one way I can give back.”
If you would like to support Curtis through a donation or pledge to run 24 minutes along side Curtis at the Centennial Centre March 3-4th, head to lakelandconnect.net/curtishargrove.