50 Gifts of Freedom

About 50 Gifts of Freedom

Ainsley's Angels of America is extremely proud to have Angel Runner Jessica spreading our mission to every state of our amazing Nation! Starting on leap year day 2016 (February 29th) in Oregon, Jessica will begin the journey of joining a different Angel Athlete-rider in a marathon in each of our 50 states! 

After each race, Ainsley's Angels of America will grant a Freedom Push Chair to the Athlete. Jessica aims to not only bestow the gift of mobility and inclusion all over the United States, but also aims to assist with the growth of the Ainsley's Angels Ambassador program to enable more to "Roll With The Wind"! 

Jessica believes that it doesn't take super athletic abilities to be able to participate, just a love for running and a love for helping others to experience and be included in this wonderful sport. 

To help support the mission you can donate HERE.

Jessicas Blog

Getting to know you. Feb 15, 2016

Hey everyone! Before I start on this new adventure I want to let you all get to know me! My name is Jessica. I am 37 and I am a wife, a mother of 3, Matthew (14), Jackman (8), and Lorelei (6). I work night shift full time as a Nurse on a post operative orthopedic unit and I am in school to finish up my BSN. I Have loved running for a long time and have been a runner on and off since middle school. What I am NOT, is an elite athlete. I am a happy mid to back of the pack runner, who probably spends too much time stopping to see the sights and take selfies and not enough time concentrating on split paces, conditioning and strength training.

I most recently came back to running after the birth of my 3rd child and what started out as a method for losing weight became a passion for running long distances. While running a half marathon two years ago, I ran into a friend who was running with a new team that had just debuted in the Raleigh area, Ainsley's Angels. She invited me to join them for their next race which I happily accepted and a new love was born! I have run 3 full marathons, 5 half marathons, and countless other distances being pulled along by different athlete riders! I absolutely love the feeling of running behind them and their race chariot! A few months ago my husband Mike and I were chatting about the possibility of me running a marathon in each state with him joining in for a few of them. We saw it as a great excuse to travel and show our kids different parts of the US. I loved the idea but couldn't imagine running these races without a rider. The first race that I was signed up for happened to be close by so I contacted a few friends and found out that there would be an Ainsley's Angels team participating. A few conversations later and we have this new goal: 50 gifts of freedom.

I am thrilled to be able to have this opportunity to partner with Ainsley's Angels for this project! I can't wait to spread the mission of Ainsley's Angels, provide gifts of mobility, and meet new Ainsley's Angels friends along the way! So here is the plan so far...

I'd like run a marathon in each state in the next 5 years. That comes down to about a state/marathon a month. There are a few races that because of location and timing I will run on back to back days but that won't happen until probably next year.

I would like to gift a chair to an athlete rider in each state. To accomplish this I will need to raise the money to buy the chairs. Our estimate at this time is that we will need to raise around $50,000. I will do this through fundraising and as I learn, hopefully, donations and gifts of chairs will be sponsored. We'll see where this part of the journey leads me.

I will be relying on Rooster and Ainsley's Angels of America to match me up with riders to gift the chairs to.

I will have this years race calendar up and ready to share in the next few weeks BUT I can let you all know that I have my first two races set! I will be running the Leap day Marathon on Feb 29th in Beaverton, Oregon and The Shamrock Marathon in Virginia Beach on March 20th. (Which happens to also be my birthday weekend!) PLEASE come out and support Ainsley's Angels and the Athletes that I will be pushing!

My main goal for this mission is FUN! I want to meet new people, introduce others to the wonderful thing that is this Ainsley's Angels family! I want to spread the message of INCLUSION, one state and one super athlete at a time! Oh, and I still want to stop and the take a ton of pictures and selfies.

See you all on the road!

Beginning the journey. Feb 22, 2016
Race 1: Oregon: March 25, 2016
Race 2: Virginia: March 13, 2016
Race 3: Kentucky: May 18, 2016
Race 4: Vermont: June 23, 2016
Race 5: South Dakota: November 8, 2016
Race 6: Illinois: October 9, 2016
Race 7: Wisconsin: November 7, 2016