Apex Wide Bay will organise Cane2Coral 2021, keeping the popular fundraising event on track for the future.
The new organisers, volunteers, committee members and supporters gathered at Bundaberg Surf Life Saving Club on Saturday.
Cane2Coral is a significant community event on the Bundaberg Region’s calendar.
For a decade it has not only raised community spirit, but also more than half a million dollars was raised for local charities.
In 2010, Cane2Coral was launched as a community fun run, with hopes to encourage 1400 participants to take part, but to the organisers' surprise 2987 runners hit the bitumen for the inaugural event.
As the annual running event grew in popularity, Cane2Coral founding president Kerry Short said it was amazing to watch.
Kerry said it was a chat over a beer at the Bargara pub with Neil Rowland that inspired the first Cane2Coral, and he didn’t realise the leap he was about to take.
“Neil asked why we didn’t have a fun run, or a community run, he said every major town or city in the United States has one … he said we needed to have one, and I thought if the surf club could get something out of it, we should have one,” Kerry said.
“The first year we gave $65,000 back to the community. We had 250 volunteers on the day – it was such an amazing event.
“I’d like to thank Apex Wide Bay for taking on this event.”
The first 10 years of Cane2Coral
Reminiscing about the first 10 years of Cane2Coral, outgoing committee president Jason Pascoe said a total of $577,786 had gone back into the Bundaberg community, and 19,926 runners had taken part, with 62 per cent of those being female.
Apex Wide Bay was handed the Cane2Coral baton for 2021 and the new organisers said they were ready to run with it.
Mr Pascoe said Apex Wide Bay was a charitable organisation who had been actively improving local communities through service work and fellowship in the Bundaberg and Fraser Coast communities for more than 70 years, and they were perfect to take on the community fun run.
“Apex Widebay really impressed us with some of their charitable works including donations to the Children’s Ward at the Bundaberg Base Hospital, organising a once-in-a-life-time snow trip to Apex’s chalet in Perisher for students at Bundaberg West special school, the family event ‘Santa Fair' and organising gift vouchers for food banks for people impacted by Covid-19, to name few,” Jason said.
“One of the great things about Cane2Coral is its wonderful community spirit and we are confident that Apex Wide Bay will continue the strong community focus of the event and the community will continue to support the event by donning their runners again in 2021.”
Apex Widebay spokesperson Kaye McIntyre said the service club was really excited about organising the Cane2Coral fun run in 2021 and they had already set up a steering committee to start planning.
“Between us, our steering committee have over 15 years experience in event planning, including organising the Mahindra Windslasher Beach Festival at Elliott Heads this year and being part of the Gympie Muster, running two bars and managing volunteer services over the last seven years,” Kaye said.
Apex Wide Bay’s Tara Spotswood said they looked forward to reaching out to the businesses and sponsors who had supported the Cane2Coral over the last 10 years and have played a huge part in the success of the event.
“We look forward also to approaching new businesses and potential sponsors to come on board so that we can continue to deliver a wonderful community fun run in 2021 and work towards another 10 years of community fun and involvement in the Cane2Coral,” Tara said.
The fun run is planned for 1 August 2021.
- Previous Cane2Coral news: Last hurrah for Cane2Coral committee