On October 1, the Madison Park 5K was honored alongside the Oaklawn Park Community Improvement Organization for the 2016 Moving Charlotte Forward award. This award was presented by the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce at its annual Neighborhood Exchange and Leadership awards banquet.
An excerpt from the award nomination read: The Madison Park 5K (aka Mad Park 5K) is changing the way that Madison Park unites as a community. In 2016 this organization adopted all neighborhood streets along the 5K route that hadn’t been previously adopted as part of the Keep Charlotte Beautiful initiative. Volunteers committed to both the 5K and the neighborhood meet at least three times each year to clean-up neighborhood streets and clear storm drains of debris. The Madison Park 5K is committed to becoming a permanent fixture in the community promoting an environment and culture of safety and wellness. Race director, Emily Bartlett, says “We understand that one part of ensuring the sustainability of our neighborhood is to keep it relevant and ensure that everyone feels safe within the boundaries of our neighborhood. Fostering a community focused on knowing your neighbors, understanding the resources in and around the neighborhood that support our community, and cultivating a culture of wellness whereby all residents regardless of age or ability are able to participate is important.”
Quotes from participants of the inaugural Mad Park 5K include:
“I’ve run over 1,000 races and served in every behind the scenes role of race directing for a number of races in Chicago. Huge and tiny. There’s little I haven’t seen or experienced in my running career. I had to be in Charlotte for a wedding and picked your race over the other four in the area that day largely because of your blog posts. … The first and primary goal of any race is safety. I saw a number of officers and even on Seneca Place there was an officer blocking the lane – that’s great! Never ever lose focus on runner safety – it may be expected, but it isn’t always easy. … My congrats to you on a well run first time event and I encourage you to keep this going. Best of lunch in everything you try.” -Race finisher
“You did an amazing job putting this together, I know who to call whenever I need a quick event planned to perfection! This really brought the neighborhood together, more than the Friday night socials! I would love to be on the committee to help plan next year’s race. Thanks again!” -Race sponsor & volunteer
“It was really fun this morning and I truly appreciate all your hard work putting this together! I’ll definitely be back next year!” -Race finisher
I sincerely want to thank everyone again, who not only helped execute and participate in the first event, but have since come to the table to help plan what I know will be an even more successful second annual Mad Park 5K. I want to also thank the City of Charlotte and the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce for recognizing our neighborhood and organization as a leader in the city. We are sincerely humbled and couldn’t be prouder of the work that our community is doing for the greater good of the city.