North Carolina State University's newest (and perhaps most infamous) tradition, the Krispy Kreme Challenge, returns for a sixth year on Saturday, Feb. 6, with 6,000 racers poised to devour more than 72,000 glazed donuts and raise at least $40,000 for N.C. Children’s Hospital. Beginning at the N.C. State Bell Tower, challengers run two miles to the Krispy Kreme store located on Peace Street in Raleigh and, after downing a dozen Krispy Kreme doughnuts, must run the two miles back. To successfully complete the Challenge, participants must complete the entire race, doughnuts and all, in less than 60 minutes.
"Doctors don’t often advocate the consumption of doughnuts, but the Krispy Kreme Challenge is the one time of year I’m willing to make an exception," jokes Dr. Alan Stiles, N.C. Children's Hospital’s physician in chief. "Kidding aside, we anticipate this year’s race to bring the Challenge’s overall fundraising total well past the $100,000 mark—all raised by N.C. State students. It’s amazing what these young people are doing, and the impacts are felt long after the last runner crosses the finish line."
The Krispy Kreme Challenge started as a dare among ten N.C. State students in Dec. 2004. After receiving coverage from campus newspapers and being ranked 85th on Sports Illustrated’s "102 More Things You Gotta Do Before You Graduate" list, student organizers decided to capitalize on the zany event’s ability to draw crowds and attention by turning the Challenge into a fundraiser for N.C. Children’s Hospital.
Since its humble beginnings, this ultimate collegiate challenge has seen nearly exponential growth, both in terms of the number of participants and the money raised. The second annual Krispy Kreme Challenge in Jan. 2006 drew more than 150 runners and netted $800 for N.C. Children's Hospital. The third annual Challenge in Jan. 2007 had 1,400 racers and raised more than $10,000 for the Children's Hospital. Participation for the fourth annual Challenge more than doubled to 3,000 participants, raising $20,000 in Feb. 2008, and last year’s Challenge drew more than 5,000 participants and resulted in a $40,000 donation to the Children’s Hospital.
Registration for the sixth annual Krispy Kreme Challenge closed almost two weeks before the big event when online registration reached full capacity at 6,000 registrants, the largest pool of runners to date. The record sell-out left hundreds more clamoring to partake in the race but, with registration limited by City of Raleigh, they will have to wait until 2011 for their shot at competing in the Challenge.
The K2 Challenge attracts a wide range of runners from beginners to serious competitors hailing from all corners of the country. Runners compete in one of two categories. "Challengers" commit to eating the full dozen doughnuts, while “Casual Runners” pay the same registration fee ($17, which includes a race day number, doughnuts and a t-shirt) but eat as few doughnuts as they choose. The field is almost evenly split between the two categories, slightly favoring the Casual Runner option.
The race portion of the Krispy Kreme Challenge will start at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 6, at the N.C. State Bell Tower, with a pre-event presentation beginning at 8 a.m. Members of the press and the public are invited to cover this unique event. Spectators often arrive at the Peace Street Krispy Kreme store as early as 7 a.m. in anticipation of the doughnut-eating spectacle, while others congregate at the N.C. State Bell Tower to witness the beginning and end of the race.
For more information about the Krispy Kreme Challenge, please visit www.krispykremechallenge.com. The site features a map of the running route and online store where would-be supporters can purchase Challenge merchandise, including $10 supporter T-shirts, with proceeds benefiting N.C. Children’s Hospital.
The Krispy Kreme Challenge is not operated by Krispy Kreme Doughnut Corporation or its affiliates. The Krispy Kreme trademark and Bowtie logo are registered trademarks of HDN Development Corporation, and are used under license from HDN Development Corporation.
Hospital media contact: Danielle M. Bates, T (919) 843-9714, C (919) 604-8150, firstname.lastname@example.org
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About North Carolina Children's Hospital
North Carolina Children's Hospital protects the health and well-being of North Carolina's 2.1 million children by aligning premier health care practitioners, world-class medical education, and innovative, interdisciplinary research to provide the highest-quality, family-centered care, regardless of a family's ability to pay. As a major referral center for children with complex and chronic conditions, N.C. Children's Hospital works hand-in-hand with community hospitals and pediatricians across the state, providing specialty care to more than 70,000 children from all 100 counties each year.
N.C. Children's Hospital offers complete pediatric inpatient and outpatient care in its 140-bed state-of-the-art facility at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill and at more than 25 satellite outpatient clinics throughout North Carolina. The Children's Hospital's world-class physicians, nurses and other clinical staff represent all pediatric subspecialties and are capable of treating children with virtually any disease or disorder. For more information, please visit www.ncchildrenshospital.org.
About UNC Health Care
The UNC Health Care System is a not-for-profit integrated health care system owned by the state of North Carolina and based in Chapel Hill. It exists to further the teaching mission of the University of North Carolina and to provide state-of-the-art patient care. UNC Health Care is comprised of UNC Hospitals, ranked consistently among the best medical centers in the country; the UNC School of Medicine, a nationally eminent research institution; community practices; home health and hospice services in seven central North Carolina counties; and Rex Healthcare and its provider network in Wake County.