A RACE DIRECTOR’S GUIDE FOR
COMMUNITY BUILDING &
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How is this Race Director guide different from all the other resources available?
We acknowledge there are numerous resources available by many different experts and organizations. This guide strives to assist race directors in community building and environmentally-conscious event planning by making it easy to find and use existing works, as well as to offer a new, collaborative approach to understanding and removing inclusivity and sustainability barriers at trail events.
We haven’t captured everything available, and we see this collection as a tool that will be continually improved upon. We welcome input to make the Race Director Resource Hub as complete and useful as possible. Please click here to provide feedback or make suggestions for additional resources to include.
This is overwhelming. How can I do all of this? Where should I start?
Updating social norms is a challenging and continuous process. Every event and race director will have a different starting place and many factors affect what can and can’t be achieved from one year to the next. Our goal is to provide the tools needed to identify and prioritize ways to implement belonging, natural history and environmental stewardship goals at events.
After reviewing the resources in the Hub, consider using the RPL checklists to prioritize your goals for the next few years. Identifying the tasks that feel achievable and are most relevant to your community can really get the ball rolling.
My race is small and doesn’t have a lot of sponsors or a large budget, how can I afford to incorporate these recommendations?
We recognize that there’s a great disparity in funding and brand-support available to race directors to produce trail running events, and that a lack of resources may pose challenges to pursuing certain goals. This Guide and the supporting pages provide you with information and tools to help you plan and implement priorities that are aligned with your perspectives and the resources currently available to you.
We recommend organizing the priorities you would like to implement by using the table below to assess impact versus cost (this may also be used to assess impact versus effort as published by the Council for Responsible Sport’s Radically Responsible Guide.)
Resources on Indigenous Community Collaboration and Land Acknowledgement
- Rising Hearts and the Rising Hearts Toolkit On how to approach including a land acknowledgement at your event.
- Running on Native Lands Initiative provides information about land acknowledgements paired with giving back.
- Wings of America A nonprofit organization using youth running initiatives to build healthy native communities.
- Meztli Project Land Acknowledgement Toolkit explains what a land acknowledgment is and how to approaching having one at your event.
- “Public Lands” as Home (Runners for Public Lands) on land acknowledgement and understanding of public lands.
Resources on Natural History
- Check out Natural History Guidebooks about your local public lands and trail systems at your local library, independent bookstore, or outdoor retailer.
- Public Lands in the United State: A Curriculum (The Wilderness Society)
- Visit the United State Forest Service website and use the “Find a Forest” tool to link to your local National Forest’s site for information about the land, cultural history and links to other resources.
- If your race is with a National Park, Forest, Recreation Area, Scenic Trail or National Monument, stop into the visitor center to chat with knowledgeable volunteers or staff. You may also visit the National Park Service’s Find a Park tool to find site specific websites that contain resources and information relevant to the areas and trails you use.
- Visit State, County, and Locally managed parks and preserve websites and/or visitor centers for information, resources and to meet local naturalists and land stewards.
- There are numerous National, Regional, and local non-profit groups and clubs that have natural history resources available online and at local officers or visitor centers. Some example of include:
- Los Padres ForestWatch (great information on plants and wildlife of the Central Coast region)
- Local land trusts and conservancies preserve public lands and are a great source of information about the natural ecosystems in your area. Consider attending some events to learn more and to meet the staff and volunteers.
- Natural History Museums are a great and fun place to visit to learn more about natural history in your area and beyond.
Environmental Stewardship [Name of resource. Who made it. Short sentence if needed]
- A Practical Guide to Hosting Radically Responsible Events – the ten things that ‘radically responsible’ events do (Council for Responsible Sport)
- Runners for Public Lands Toolkit – specific steps anyone can take to start adding environmental stewardship to their running community (Runners for Public Lands)
- Trail Running Race Sustainability Guidelines (American Trail Running Association)
- Trail Race Director Toolkit How to use Protect our Winters resources to educate and help trail runners become effective climate advocates (POW)
- “Outdoor Friendly Pledge” ideas and actions to make outdoor sports more sustainable (The Kilian Jornet Foundation)
- Sustainability Goals for Events and Athletes (Salomon)
- Footprints Running Camp trail running camps combining environmental education with direct action (Footprints Running)
- Athlete’s for a Fit Planet 2021 Pledge for Sustainability
- ReScore – a free event sustainability assessment tool, including an event GHG calculator, responsible event catalog and case studies (Council for Responsible Sport)
- Cost of Carbon Calculator outdoor enthusiasts can calculate the carbon footprint of their adventures and purchase offsets to take meaningful action on climate. (The North Face and Protect our Winters)
- 100% compostable, plant-based food service wares with 25% of profits given to social and environmental organizations (World Centric)
- 100% compostable, plant-based food service wares with easy ordering for one or many event vendors (EcoProducts)
- Trees not Tees works with event organizers to give participants the option of planting a tree instead of getting a shirt. Check out the article Changing Race Swag wit Trees not Tees by iRunFar’s Morgan Tilton
- Terracycle and Gu have partnered to offer recycling of all brands of nutrition wrappers and packaging at events.
- One Percent for the Planet provides a service to match event organizers interested in donating proceeds from events to vetted and approved non-profit environmental causes.