Last Updated on March 1, 2021 by 500 Festival
SOURCE: News release from 500 Festival
INDIANAPOLIS – The 500 Festival, a nonprofit organization providing life-enriching events and programs that celebrate the spirit and legacy of the Indianapolis 500, today announces the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon and Delta Dental 500 Festival 5K will transition to a fully virtual event for 2021. Currently registered participants will receive details with additional information regarding their participation options.
The 500 Festival worked closely with health officials, medical experts, and community leaders to develop plans to ensure the safety of all participants, volunteers, staff, spectators, and surrounding communities. After extensive evaluation, it was determined that the 500 Festival would not be able to host the Indy Mini in its traditional, in-person format.
When registration for the 2021 event opened last spring, the 500 Festival was hopeful to return to the historic and iconic Indy Mini experience. As a nonprofit organization that hosts large scale events in Indy’s public spaces, the organization faced a number of unique challenges and explored the necessary policies and protocols related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Like all of our Indy Mini participants, volunteers, and spectators, we were eager, hopeful, and excited to return to the traditional OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon experience this year,” said Bob Bryant, president and CEO of the 500 Festival. “Right now, the most important thing all of us can do is to support our local and state health officials and hospitals, as well as focus our efforts on positive community outcomes. We will continue to work on the remaining 500 Festival month of May activities and look forward to participating in the events at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway culminating with the Indy 500.”
“Please know that we are committed to providing the most compelling and innovative virtual experiences possible to encourage everyone to stay fit, healthy, and moving,” Bryant said. “Indy Mini participants are some of the 500 Festival’s most important and meaningful supporters. We cannot thank these participants enough for their participation and enthusiasm for running, walking, wheelchair racing, and challenging themselves to physical achievement.”
The Virtual Indy Mini race experience will include:
§ A custom race package including distance-specific finisher gear, runner’s service items, and much more, delivered to participants
§ Virtual resources, including digital bibs, finisher certificates, and access to a virtual participant-only Facebook group
§ The new Indy Mini app that serves as a center for GPS tracking, race results, announcements, and real-time spectator tracking
§ An interactive and virtual health & fitness Expo
“This past year has taught us the importance of adapting to new situations and celebrating the experiences that bring us joy,” said Jen Pittman, OneAmerica vice president enterprise communications and community affairs. “While a virtual race is different than an in-person race experience, the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon still allows us to share in the excitement of individual triumphs and be a part of a larger community celebration.”
The OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon is the single largest fundraiser for the 500 Festival. Through the support of one million past race participants and each new Indy Mini registration, the 500 Festival reaches more than 100,000 Hoosier children annually through free and meaningful youth education and health programming.
The OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon is sponsored by OneAmerica, Delta Dental, Franciscan Health, and Meijer. The Indy Mini broadcast partner in the Indianapolis market is WTHR, Channel 13.
About the 500 Festival
Founded in 1957, the 500 Festival is a not-for-profit organization that produces more than 50 life-enriching events and programs while celebrating the spirit and legacy of the Indianapolis 500 and fostering positive impact on the city of Indianapolis and state of Indiana. One of the largest festivals in the nation, each year more than half a million people attend an event or program produced by the 500 Festival. Since its founding, the 500 Festival has contributed more than $500 million in economic value to Indianapolis. To learn more about the 500 Festival, please visit www.500festival.com or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.