Harbin Hero Challenge Takes Off

Heroes are getting ready to run, walk, fly and maybe even crawl into Rome for the 2018 edition of the Harbin Hero Hustle 5K and two-mile health walk on September 29th.

But before the race can soar into action, the Harbin Heroes need your help in selecting five local charities to participate in the Harbin Hero Challenge. These charities are superheroes for the community and will receive a portion of $4,250 in donations from Harbin Clinic.

The nomination period opens on Monday, July 2 and ends at 10 p.m. on Friday, July 27.

To nominate a charity, individuals need to post the charity name and include the hash tag, #HarbinHeroChallenge to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

A quick note, shares and likes don’t count, as nominations and creating an image with the hashtag and charity name won’t work either.

The hashtag “#HarbinHeroChallenge” must be in the text of the post or comment, or the vote doesn’t count.

Holy Hashtag, Batman!

Here are the Harbin Hero Challenge Rules for nominations:

  • Only one vote is accepted per Facebook, Twitter or Instagram user
  • Nominations must use both #HarbinHeroChallenge and name the charity in the post or comment
  • Make sure if the post is on Facebook that it is set to public, so it can be counted
  • The charity must be an actively registered 501(c)(3)
  • The charity must be based in Floyd, Bartow, Polk, Chattooga or Gordon County
  • The charity must support health, educational or cultural causes
  • The nomination period closes at 10 p.m. on July 27

The five charities receiving the most nominations all win a $500 donation from Harbin Clinic. Those five charities will be announced on Tuesday, July 31.

Over the last two years, more than 85 charities have received 600+ nominations. Local charities who have earned Hero Challenge status include the Rome YMCA, Living Proof Recovery, Sweet Cocoon, Floyd County CASA, Summit Quest, Hospitality House, Harbor House and DIGS.

It’s important to remember that every nomination matters. In both the 2016 and 2017 contests, a late nominating surge proved to be the difference for a couple of charities.

Perhaps the most notable moment came over the final 36 hours of the 2017 challenge when Living Proof Recovery surged from 20th place with a handful of nominations to a top-five spot with more than 50 nominations.

So it’s never too late to get those nominations in, and it’s important to remember that no lead is safe.

There Can Only Be ONE

The five charities receiving the most nominations also compete to become the overall Harbin Hero Challenge winner and receive an additional $1,000 donation.

The charity winning the $1,000 donation is determined by points tallied from runners and walkers registering for the Harbin Hero Hustle, as well as points accumulated from costume contest winners.

People signing up to participate in the 5K run or two-mile health walk can select one of the five charities to support.

Early registrations earn two points for designated charities, while race-day registrations earn one point for selected charities.

The final chance for charities to earn points comes in the costume contest. There will be three categories this year:

  • Best junior hero or villain (age 10 and under)
  • Best hero or villain
  • Best dynamic duo or league of heroes

Contest winners earn an additional 10 points for their chosen charity.

The YMCA has claimed the title the past two years and will most likely be a formidable foe again in 2018.

However, there is a new twist. Along with the $1,000 prize, there will be an extra $750 prize the winning charity isn’t eligible for (sorry YMCA… you can’t win it all).

How does the special $750 prize work? For each preregistered runner and walker, the charity will earn a piece of paper in a large jar. In other words, if your charity has 60 preregistered runners and walkers, they get 60 pieces of paper.

After the race is over and the overall charity winner gets their prize, a piece of paper will be pulled at random from the jar and that charity gets the extra $750 donation. So the more preregistered runners and walkers a charity has, the better chance they have of winning. Only pre-registered votes are eligible for this part of the competition.

Be sure to check Harbin Clinic’s Facebook page for updates throughout the nominating period to see which local charities are in the lead.

Remember, your favorite charity can’t win if they don’t get nominated. So be sure to share on social media so all those local, charitable superheroes get recognized.