About two months ago, Jack Quinn's Running Club president Shawn Finley called PikesPeakSports.us owner Tim Bergsten with a fun suggestion.
"I think we should do a Christmas Party and I think Pikes Peak Sports should host it," Finley said.
Bergsten thought about it for three seconds and responded: "I'm in."
The planning began and they made three key decisions, the event would be a toy drive for the nonprofit On Eagles Wings and a food drive for Care and Share, they would hold it at Stargazers Theatre, and they'd invite nonprofit organizations and for-profit companies to participate.
On Tuesday, their ideas came to fruition in one hell of a Christmas party.
So much food was collected that Care and Share had to make arrangements for larger vehicles to haul it all away. And there were enough toys beneath the Christmas tree to overflow the bed of a pickup truck.
The event was a first for PikesPeakSports.us and the Jack Quinn's Running Club, as neither had attempted a large expo-type affair. But the runners and the vendors were excited to participate.
The band "Tribe" played its cool Cajun roots music and had the place hopping for the better part of four hours.
Longtime Jack Quinn's runner Karen Barry completed her 200th run and received a huge applause as she was introduced. Scott Raffeson ran for the 100th time.
"As a community, we really show what we're about when we can gather behind a good cause," Bergsten said. "When I saw people carrying in pounds and pounds of food and all of these great toys ... that was a big moment."
Stargazers owner and manager John Hooton said he's looking forward to the next Pikes Peak Sports/Jack Quinn's event. Bergsten and Finley are considering a summer event at Stargazers.
"This turned out better than we thought it would," Hooton said. "We really want to do it again."
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