Terry Fox Run folks get a break from city hall.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

June 11th, 2019

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The Terry Fox Run for a Cure got a bit of a break from city hall.

In the past they have had to pay a significant fee for the use of Spencer Smith Park.

Craig Gardner Terry Fox

Craig Gardner, chair of the Burlington Terry Fox Run Committee

Craig Gardner appeared before the Committee of the Whole Monday evening with a request that the city grant a permanent waiver of City fees related to the Burlington Terry Fox Run.

The Terry Fox Run started September 13, 1981 shortly after Terry’s death June 28, 1981. Terry started his run April 13, 1980 which included coming through Burlington, but he had to stop after 143 days and 5373 km on Sept 1, 1980 in Thunder Bay.

Burlington has had a run every year and after 38. During that time 23,000 runners in Burlington have raised over $2 million. Approximately 80% of these funds have gone to Cancer research including funding of cancer research at McMaster in Hamilton.

Isadore Sharp, founder of the Four Seasons Hotel chain, met with Terry before he passed away to get Terry’s okay to have an annual run (Izzy had lost a son to cancer in 1978).

It was at this time that Terry set the rules that all Terry Fox Runs to follow; those rules are still in place today.

There are to be no Corporate sponsorship, no entry fee, no minimum donation, not a timed run, family event, all funds raised must be forwarded to the foundation, any goods or services required to hold a Terry Fox Run must be donated or be covered by specific donations from third parties (e.g. food, service, or security requirements), locally everyone involved with the run is a volunteer, no paid staff.

Fox monument with Brant Inn

The monument to the time Terry Fox ran through Burlington was a citizen initiative, conceived and paid for by private donations. The only hitch with this project was how difficult city hall made to get it done. The citizens prevailed.

“As you can imagine” said Gardner, “ it is a lot of work to host a run under these rules. We find Burlington a great city in terms of local businesses generosity in donating goods and services without a tax receipt and without the ability to advertise their donation, but we find it very hard to solicit cash.

“We have minimal cash obligations of about $200 per year for honorariums for St. Johns Ambulance, a radio club that helps make our run secure and licenses to play music from SOCAN and RESOUND.

“The city bill which is in the neighbourhood of $700 for park rental and park staff for the 4 hours we are in the park Sunday morning is by far our largest cash expense.

“To uphold Terry’s wishes and as a Canadian hero we request the city permanently waive the fee for this event in his honour. Majority of the cities in Canada waive this fee, as is the case in Oakville. Our plea is to make every dollar we raise go towards the research of finding the cure for cancer.”

See link for details on the way funds are to be used go to: https://www.terryfox.org/our-role-and-research/policies-and-guidelines/

The reply from the council committee was one of the fastest we have seen – slam, bam and it was done.

The recommendation will go to Council on the 17th.

This should have been done years ago.

Will others come a calling asking for the same break? Might, but they have quite a barrier to get over.

The Gazette has covered every Terry Fox run for the past eight years.

Don Carmichael, chair of the Terry Fox run in 2012, meets with part of his team to go over the final check-ins before the event gets serious and the crowds begin to show up.

Fox 2013 ommy+daughter+dog

It has always been a family event.

Many of the pictures we cherish the most are set out below.

 

when you cross that finish line - a cup of water is real welcome. The Terry Fox organization in Burlington covers all the bases.

When you cross that finish line – a cup of water is real welcome. The Terry Fox organization in Burlington covers all the bases.

A really special team - Casey Cosgrove and his supporters.

A really special team – Casey Cosgrove and his supporters.

Many people see the Terry Fox run as a unique thing that happened in Canada and was the result of one Canadian's supreme effort. The Canadian flag just seems to be a part of the event - and there were plenty of them handed out.

Many people see the Terry Fox run as a unique thing that happened in Canada and was the result of one Canadian’s supreme effort. The Canadian flag just seems to be a part of the event – and there were plenty of them handed out.

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