Strong winds were no match for the more than 700 runners, walkers and volunteers last week raising money for the utility energy assistance programs.
The 11th annual Heat the Streets Run & Walk for Warmth, organized by OPPD, Metropolitan Utilities District and Black Hills Energy, was held March 3 at a new location – Werner Park in Sarpy County.
The runners and walkers – 356 of whom were first-timers – enjoyed the scenic trails surrounding the ball park and the Prairie Queen Recreation Area despite wind gusts as high as 55 mph from the northwest.
More than $900,000 has been raised by the event over the past 10 years; raising awareness and funds for energy-related expenses. Moving the venue to Werner Park made for a centralized location for organizers and a family-friendly atmosphere.
Heat the Streets is OPPD’s largest fundraising event for the Energy Assistance Program (EAP) and over 200 employees and their families along with strong support from the senior management team represented OPPD.
Despite the windy conditions, one OPPD runner enjoyed the weather and the course.
“I am an avid runner and have never run the course before,” said Stacey Centarri, who heads up OPPD’s employee wellness programs. “I enjoyed the out and back scenic route with a few hills to challenge me. It was great to see the OPPD vests out on the course to cheer each other on. I’m looking forward to doing again next year.”
EAP works year-round to help neighbors in need. Click here to make a tax-deductible donation.