While San Diego can’t exactly offer people a white Christmas, there has always been one holiday tradition that anyone can participate in to boost the holiday cheer. The Santa Run, a 5K held on Garnet Avenue, is a huge event that many were looking forward to this season.
“You run a 5k, and you get hot chocolate and cookies, and you get to wear a beard and dress up like Santa with your friends,” sophomore Kayla Ansfield said. “It’s just a good way to get in the spirit for the holidays.”
Ansfield was ready to dress up in her best Santa suit for the run that was set to take place on Saturday, Dec. 13. However, due to a financial issue, the entire run was called off unexpectedly.
“My mom checked the website because she wanted to check something on there, and we saw that there wasn’t a website,” Ansfield said. “Then we got an email a couple days later.”
This email confirmed the worst, telling all Santa Run participants that this year, the run simply would not be possible, no matter how much Christmas spirit everyone had.
“The company that hosts it went bankrupt, so they weren’t able to fund the run because there weren’t enough volunteers,” Ansfield said.
The holidays are expensive, draining savings accounts in the rush to buy gifts for family and friends, so it’s to be expected that Santa runners wanted their registration fee refunded. However, the company’s email to the participants stated that they would not be giving out refunds.
“I felt sad, because me and Kayla felt like we got ripped off – that they took our money,” sophomore Amanda Correa said. Correa was going to take part in the Santa Run along with Ansfield this year.
Correa and Ansfield paid for early registration, which is less expensive than registering for the run later, which could cost up to $70. Nonetheless, the girls want to do everything they can to get back the money they could have spent on gifts this year.
“My mom is going to check with the bank to see if we can get our money back,” Ansfield said. “It was $35.”
The two girls have never been in the Santa Run before, and it looks like it might be quite some time before they have a chance again.
“We’ll see,” Correa said. “Maybe next year, if they can get some funding by then.”
So maybe 2014 won’t be San Diego’s year for Santa to get in shape, but there’s always 2015. Until then, Ansfield and Correa can prepare for the next opportunity with their cookie-eating, toy-making, and sleigh-driving for a little bit longer.