The Say No To Drugs Holiday Classic was started 28 years ago by world class runner and local resident Sandra Johnson. The idea was to promote an anti-drug message by raising awareness through a road race. From there it has become one of the premier races in the Tampa Bay area, drawing up to 2,500 runners with Elite athletes competing from all over the world.
Top runners in prior years have included six-time World Ironman Triathlon Champion Mark Allen, Canadian Olympian Peter Maher, American Olympian Ronnie Holassie, Swiss Olympian Dan Otz as well as local Clearwater stars Mary Level-Menton and Judy Mercon-Maguire.
Our goals are to spread the positive message “Say No To Drugs” to as many people as possible. It is especially important to us for this message to get to the younger generation – as they are the future – and we don’t want our future on drugs.
Although the race staff are largely un-paid volunteers, there are considerable expenses to put on a race like this, however we try had, and profits/proceeds are given to local charities that have included Challenged Athletes Foundation, Pinellas County Youth Ranch, Operation PAR, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and more.
This race takes place thanks to the effort of over 200 volunteers who work together in an organized and coordinated manner thoughout the year under the direction of the Clearwater Community Volunteers. From executives to chiropractors, children to sponsors, all contribute with their individual abilities or resources for the purpose of a great race and the anti-drug message.
Here are just a few of our 200 dedicated volunteers! Together they work to make this race a truly organized, fun activity that everyone can enjoy.