All runners, from marathon runners to those new to the sport, are invited to come out to Cork & Olive Wine Bar and Cafe the second Thursday of each month to Run For A Cause.
For the Thursday, Nov. 8 at 6:30 p.m., the fun run from 1-5K will offer proceeds from wine sales for the full day of the event along with a raffle and auction to benefit Honor Flight of West Central Florida in honor of Veterans Day. Honor Flight's sole mission is to take local World War II veterans to the WWII Memorial in Washington, D.C., for free.
Marathon runner and organizer Benjamin Mena came up with the idea for Run for A Cause one night at Cork & Olive.
“I came up with the idea while having a drink at the bar," he said. "There are all kinds of pub runs in Tampa that are really popular, but there’s nothing in Brandon or on this side of town. I went to the owners of Cork & Olive with the idea and they were immediately on board and asked me to set everything up, so I did.”
Run for a Cause has been around for about seven months and has been a success from its very first event.
“On our very first run, we had 55 people and things just keep getting bigger and bigger. For each run we have had, we average between 50-60 people each month,” said Mena.
Each run starts at Cork & Olive and goes along the Brandon Parkway, with each runner having the opportunity to choose how far he or she wishes to run.
“The routes are set up so that people can decide how far they want to go,” said Mena. “This is an environment where no matter what kind of runner you are, whether a novice or new to the sport, you can feel accepted.”
After the run portion of the evening, participants have the chance to wind down inside Cork & Olive with some glasses of wine and the chance to browse the bottle selections.
“The whole place is packed for each run and people buy drinks to increase Cork & Olive’s sales. The proceeds from the purchases then go toward the charity that Run for a Cause is supporting that month,” said Mena.
Run for a Cause has supported charities such as Live Strong, Girls on the Run, Families Fighting Cancer, Homeless Emergency Project and also has plans to support a toy drive in December.
Cork & Olive Wine Bar and Café is located at 2086 Badlands St. in Brandon. For more information about Run for a Cause and to find out the next run date, email Mena at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on Honor Flight of West Central Florida, contact retired Lt. Col. James W. Haake, president and volunteer of Honor Flight, 813-842-5843 or visit the website.