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Tussey Mountainback race seeks beneficiary applicants from local community


State College, PA—The Tussey Mountainback 50 Mile Relay and Ultramarathon, an annual footrace held in central Pennsylvania’s Rothrock State Forest, is accepting applications from local nonprofit organizations for consideration as the event beneficiary for its 2020 event.

Local runners Mike Casper and Steven Bodner founded the event in 2000. Both had participated in long-distance running events and wanted to establish a race that would highlight the scenic running venues available in Rothrock State Forest, while also giving something back to the community.

“We had no idea whether the event itself would catch on with the running community,” said Casper, the event’s director. “We had a sense that it would be fun for runners, but it wasn’t clear whether it would be effective as a means of raising money.”

Since its founding, the Tussey Mountainback 50 Mile Relay and Ultramarathon has raised over $125,000 for 16 local nonprofit organizations. The 2019 Tussey Mountainback event raised $5,000 for Centre Volunteers in Medicine.

There are so many amazing and hardworking agencies that do so much to help people in need and enrich our community, from healthcare to education to the arts,” said Casper. “It’s an honor to be able to support them.”

Casper said a particular focus of the event is to help small and lesser-known organizations. “We feel that part of what we can do is increase awareness in our local community of the vital work these agencies do. When people know about the good that gets done, they want to support and sustain it.”

Nonprofit organizations wishing to apply for consideration as an event beneficiary can visit https://www.tusseymountainback.com/beneficiary/beneficiary-program for an application form. Applications for 2020 will be accepted through March 10, and the 2020 beneficiary will be announced March 16.

As a running event, the Mountainback has hosted recreational and competitive relay teams and ultramarathon runners from all over the United States. Nearly 100 ultramarathoners and 60 relay teams took part in the 2019 event. Race day for this year’s event is Oct. 11, 2020.


The Happy Valley Adventure Bureau is a major sponsor of the Mountainback event. Event details and online registration are available at www.tusseymountainback.comFor information on participating or volunteering at the event, send an email to volunteer@tusseymountainback.com.

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