With its riverfront pathways and footbridges, the Charles River Esplanade provides the ideal training ground for those preparing to run in the 124th Boston Marathon on Monday, April 20 of next year, and for the second consecutive year, 15 members of Team Esplanade will have the opportunity to give back to the park via the Esplanade Association, which has been named an Official Charity for the event.
Through the Official Charity Program, the Boston Athletic Association supports select nonprofit organizations that strengthen the local community by providing them with a significant fundraising opportunity. In 2019, participants running the 123rd Boston Marathon on behalf of the members of the Official Charity Program raised $20.3 million.
“We are pleased to have the Esplanade Association as a member of the 2020 Boston Marathon Official Charity Program,” Tom Grilk, Chief Executive Officer of the Boston Athletic Association, said in a press release. “We value the Esplanade Association’s work to strengthen our local community through programming, and their commitment to promoting healthy lifestyles throughout the park – particularly by creating a vibrant and beautiful setting for runners to enjoy all year long.”
Members of Team Esplanade 2020 include Travis Barfield; Kara Brennan, who also ran with Team Esplanade last year; David Breaux; Marshall Caldera, athletic director for the Esplanade Association’s partners at Hill House; Jeanne “Mei-Mei” Chow; Alexander Hernandez; Junil Kwun; Brian McManus, who serves on the board of Hill House’s partners at Community Boating; Maggie Moore; Mimi Murphy; Bryan Natale, who serves on the board of the Charles River Watershed Association; and his wife, Carolina Säve-Natale , an Esplanade Association board member; Alvaro Razuk; Christine Rhea; Noah Schlesinger, a member of the Esplanade Association Friends Council; and Lisa Taffe.
“We are honored to once again be selected as an Official Charity by the Boston Athletic Association,” Michael Nichols, executive director of the Esplanade Association, said in a press release. “Every day of the year, thousands log their miles amidst the Esplanade’s gorgeous gardens, towering trees, and engaging events. This is an incredible way for the local running community to give back to the park.”
The Esplanade Association’s work is critical to improving the biological diversity and beauty of the natural environment on the Esplanade, utilizing the best practices in land care to improve soil heath, manage invasive plant species, expand native plantings and care for Boston’s urban tree canopy. Every year, they also bring thousands of children, students and families to the park for free exercise classes, day camps and educational events. One hundred percent of all money raised goes directly to support these causes and to make sure the park stays a welcoming place for its millions of visitors each year.
To contribute to Team Esplanade, visit https://charity.gofundme.com/o/en/campaign/esplanade-association.