A Good Run Spoiled

A promoter of “fun run” marathons has canceled several events this year and may or may not be providing refunds. 

Shoelace Events out of Chandler, Ariz., has recently staged successful events like its “Neon Dash” in cities like Sacramento and Los Angeles, but several events in other cities were canceled with would-be participants still awaiting refunds.

One was an Aug. 16 5k run in Portland, Ore., with $30 tickets. Shoelace alerted patrons via email that it was canceled because of logistical problems. However, the event has not been rescheduled and has declined to issue refunds because, according the website, they are not given “for any reason. No exceptions,” as reported by The Oregonian.  

Other Shoelace events have been canceled over the summer in Kansas City, Austin and Atlanta. A Dec. 13 “Ultimate Santa Run” in San Diego was canceled.

The Oregonian noted the Portland event was still selling tickets five days after the cancellation notice and that Shoelace said on its Facebook page that the canceled Kansas City Neon Dash was successfully held Aug. 16, a week before it was scheduled.

Meanwhile, a vendor that provided equipment for the events told the paper that there were “no issues on my end” and that it was “100 percent ready to go until I received a phone call telling me otherwise.”

Shoelace owner Austin Cash McKnight, whose “number has been disconnected” according to the Oregonian, told the paper it was never intentional to sell tickets after the Portland cancellation. Jason Ragland, McKnight’s stepbrother, told the paper he was operations manager at Shoelace until April, adding the initial business was successful with early events generating nearly $200,000 in ticket and merch sales.

However, he poured cold water on the suggestion there were logistical problems with the recent cancellations. “He wasn’t getting enough registrations,” Ragland said.