One great perk of what I do for a living is I get to meet some pretty amazing people who are shaping the world with their creative vision. Meet Courtney Young, a fresh entrepreneur who left her job to pursue a dream with her husband. I’ve asked her to share with us her livelihood as co-owner of Sour Fish Events.
Here is her story.
Running for fitness, health and social purposes has many benefits to it that I have witnessed first-hand throughout my life. In 2012, I decided that I wanted to create a career out of something I loved and help bring joy to others through that path. I partnered with my husband (then boyfriend), we quit our “real jobs,” and got to work.
Sour Fish Events was born. We started with a simple vision, to create well-organized events that we would love participating in. Our first race was The Great Pumpkin Run. It is our baby and to date, is our largest and most popular event series. We host this fall-themed run across the Midwest and East Coast. Participants receive pumpkins, awesome shirts, medals, and apple cider. At first, it was a run. It was just another 5K that I was hoping would bring out some runners who enjoy the fall season while seeing what their times were. Over the course of the next four seasons, all of that would gradually change. The Great Pumpkin Run, along with all of our running events, has grown to focus more on having fun while doing fitness than to see how fast you are on any given day (although we do time you if you really want to know!) Sure, everyone is going out there to complete the 5K course, but they aren’t all going to do it in the same way. We have the runners, the competitive-against-themselves-and-their-time group, walkers, those out for their first 5K and those who are pushing themselves like never before to cross that finish line.
Aside from The Great Pumpkin Run, we also have The Hard Cider Run. Another 5K pushing you for 3.1 miles, but in the name of hard cider at the finish! Personally, I think this run brings out more people for the social aspect of the sport than for the fitness aspect. When you’re running for the hard cider at the finish line, it is easy to grab the friends who have never run before and they’ll walk alongside you for the 5K just to get some of the good stuff!
We like to think we are creating the perfect place for all of these people to come together in the name of fitness (and pumpkins or hard cider, depending on which event of ours you’re doing!). It doesn’t matter if you’re out there for the weight loss journey, the competitiveness or the social aspect, everyone is there to support each other. All of our runners get a medal for crossing that finish line and some even get two! In The Great Pumpkin Run, they’ll receive two medals for carrying a pumpkin with them and in The Hard Cider Run, for eating a cider donut at every mile! Anyone up for the challenge?
Over the past four years I have really seen this first hand, and it is always beautiful to me. I have been told someone ran her first 5K after losing 100 pounds. A child ran his first 5K after being declared cancer free NINE DAYS EARLIER! And most recently, a woman wrote a lengthy post on our Facebook page about how she was terrified to even start, but someone in the race helped get her across the finish line. That story moved me to tears, and judging by its popularity, about 22,000 others as well.
Sour Fish Events is not only in the running business, but is in the business of helping create something for someone that wasn’t there before. Whether that is a fitness journey, an unlikely friendship or a goal that seemed unattainable that just was reached, we’re there to help.
Courtney Young, Co-Owner of Sour Fish Events
All photos courtesy of GameFace Media.