Helderberg to Hudson Half Marathon Update

by Josh Merlis

We sincerely hope that you and your family's health has not been affected by COVID-19 and that it remains that way. If you are currently battling with it, we genuinely wish you a complete recovery.

Due to the impact of COVID-19, we unfortunately cannot hold the race on April 18. We are abiding by, and fully support, the restrictive mandates to minimize all person to person interaction to reduce the severity of the pandemic and its impact on our health system, and ask that you also follow the social distancing guidelines set forth by the CDC.

Our company, ARE Event Productions, is an organization comprised of runners, ourselves, and we are firm believers in the magic of race day. The anxiety of race morning, lining up at the start line, hearing the horn sound, and pushing your body as hard as you can. 22% of you were going to run your first half marathon with us. Last year, nearly 50% of our racers either completed their first half marathon or set a new fastest time. Event day is an atmosphere filled with an energy and excitement that powered us through those cold winter morning training runs and the days you just didn’t want to get out.

And so it is our desire to still give that to you, for you to earn the 2020 finishers medal. To that end, it is with great appreciation to Albany County, the City of Albany, the Town of New Scotland and the many other involved entities that we have been quickly able to reschedule this event for Saturday, August 29, 2020.

On Monday, you will receive an email that includes a link offering you two choices:

  1. Remain part of this event, and join us on Saturday, August 29, 2020. It is our strong hope that the date works for you, and you choose to join us. (You may also keep your entry and transfer it up to 3 days prior to the event if you need to.)
  2. Choose to be refunded (up to 100% of your entry)

While our event does have a posted no-refund policy, we recognize the potential impact this situation may be having on you, and we recognize it because of its impact on us. The reality is, offering refunds will financially cripple us. Nearly all of the expenses have already been incurred, and as we are moving the date to still hold this event in 2020, we are still subject to complete payment on the few remaining costs.

With that said, you will have the option to choose a refund if you desire, and to choose the amount. Please note that the majority of our full-time staffs’ sustenance and the operating costs for our company and the Albany Running Exchange club comes from the races ARE Event Productions times and helps produce, and with every one of these races canceled through the end of our normal spring season, we have an extremely limited source of revenue for the foreseeable future.

As such, your refund would not be coming from your actual registration payment (of which nearly 95% goes to the already purchased expenses of the event, itself) but rather would come from the remaining funds we have to keep our business/club afloat and pay our staff during this shutdown. We appreciate your consideration of this as you choose your refund amount. That being said, we also recognize that for many of you, these funds are just as important for the survival of you and your family.

We do also want you to consider patronizing Druthers, our title sponsor, during this time. They have locations in Albany, Saratoga, and Schenectady, all offering take-out and delivery. And come race day, your continued support of them will have you enjoying free beer with us at the finish, as well as enjoying live music and a true finish line party.

As runners, we feel we have an enhanced and unique level of toughness. Not the kind of physical strength that one sees at a quick glance, but the internal confidence and belief that goals that once seemed unattainable can one day be achieved. As we confront this new challenge together, even though we know not where its finish line lay, harness that same strength that gets you out there to train, even on the worst of days, to remind yourself that you can get through this too.

We greatly appreciate you choosing our event and hope to see you cross our finish line on August 29.


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