The next opportunity to raise some extra charity money was at a Star Wars collectors convention called Echo Live, held in a shopping centre in Redditch. Echo Live is the brain child of Adam Pemberton from the Echo Base Facebook group. This had the potential to be great! Would it be?.....
Things in my life were so busy that I was only able to juggle my work & family commitments and one Running Stormtrooper chapter at a time. Echo Live took place just 6 days after the London Marathon. As soon as the marathon was out of the way I focused on Echo. This event has been getting bigger and bigger and attracted a lot of people who all seemed to appreciate Star Wars characters. Bonus! This could be great :)
This was my second chance to treadmill Run as the Running Stormtrooper in 2018 but I had been massively letdown by my second hand Proform treadmill at Camden Market, I needed something else. Fortunately a man who lives on the RAF base nearby came to my aid and lent me his.
I finished work on the Friday afternoon and drove to Redditch were I was able to set everything up. Adam Pemberton and his team had managed to acquire 3 unused shopping units, which for 24 hours would be taken over by people ranging from Star Wars actors selling autographs, to traders selling vintage Star Wars toys (big business). The Echo Live team had the bright idea of putting me in the largest of the 3 unit’s shop window! I set up (and tested) the treadmill and positioned all of my leaflets, medals and posters. I had a prime slot.
The Saturday was brilliant. The prime location worked like a charm for both Echo Live and the Running Stormtrooper. People were drawn into the unit as a Running Stormtrooper in the shop window was a very unusual sight. I wasn’t sure how far i’d run. I planned on at least a half marathon but wasn’t sure how i’d feel so soon after the hottest London marathon in history. I also had another event the following day in Cholsey which I had committed to months earlier, the Tree House Run.
Running under the bright halogen lights of the shop window was just as hot, if not hotter than running in the London Marathon. The heat was incredible however I cracked on with it as the interest was brilliant. My tactic was to run for a mile then stop for a quick drink then run more. After a couple of hours I ended up stopping every half mile or so, this enabled me to drink but I also to engage with people who were eager to know more.
I ended up running 17 miles during the day and managed to raise £419! In my opinion the day was a great success. I managed to generate some decent charity money, spread the word about the Virtual Run Series and up the awareness of the entire project.
I must thank the Echo Live team for allowing me to join in with their great event. Not only was I able to help my charity, they managed to raise a great deal for their own charity as well!