"They're all tied up with guarding the country right now," said Bob Zirt of the Salisbury Rowan Runners, the group whose members organize the event.
"They said they simply didn't have the money to help us."
Winter Flight, which is scheduled for Feb. 3, includes a pair of runs and health walks.The longer of those two measures 8 kilometers (approximately 5 miles).The shorter covers a mile.
While the Guard will continue to provide personnel to help direct traffic and serve any number of other purposes on the day of the races, Zirt
and other event organizers admit they're struggling to come up with another financial sponsor.
Money raised through the run/walks is intended to assist the families and dependents of the victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington, D.C.
The amount raised will decrease greatly if another financial backer isn't found, organizers said.Money provided by the sponsors goes to pay for sweatshirts (one of which is given to all 8-kilometer participants), as well as trophies.
"I don't know how much money we're going to raise unless we get another sponsor or come up with a lot more runners," Zirt
Winter Flight has a long and proud history.
The event was first staged in 1984 and has been held every year since with the exception of one February when ice forced its cancellation.
Initially, the race began and ended in downtown Salisbury, the path of the event going through the city's historic district.Eventually, the event's start and finish lines was moved to Catawba College
, with the route for the 8-kilometer event circling out Statesville Boulevard, then following U.S. 601 back to the college.
If you're interested in helping sponsor Winter Flight, contact Judy or Bob Zirt
Contact Steve Huffman at 704-797-4247 or firstname.lastname@example.org .