Runners line up for the 3.3 mile run through the streets of Delphos. The annual Pump and Run event helped benefit the Matt Ulrich Foundation. (DHI Media/Joe Dray)
Runners line up for the 3.3 mile run through the streets of Delphos. The annual Pump and Run event helped benefit the Matt Ulrich Foundation. (DHI Media/Joe Dray)

DELPHOS — The Matt Ulrich Foundation kicked off their yearly fundraiser Saturday at Stadium Park with the second annual Pump and Run. The event combines weightlifting with long-distance running and is the organizations largest fundraiser. The foundation partnered with several area business to promote fitness, education, and mental health.

Participants gathered at Peak Fitness for the first part of the event, which included bench pressing a percentage of their body weight. Each rep at the gym removed 20 seconds from their run time with a maximum of 30 reps.

After pumping up at the gym, around 120 race goers lined up for the 3.3 mile run that began and concluded at Stadium Park. The overall female winner was Jill Suever of Delphos and Collin Grothaus of Columbus Grove placed first for the men.

Matt Ulrich was a graduate of Delphos Jefferson High School where he played football, basketball, and ran track. After high school, he went on to earn his Juris Doctorate from Capital University Law School and worked for Franklin County Children’s Services.

Matt passed away at the age of 38, and the Pump and Run is a way to honor his legacy, as well as give back to the community. “We were thinking what we could do to honor Matt, so we decided to come up with a pump and run because it is such a unique event,” said event organizer Todd Grothaus.

The main goal of the foundation is to promote positive mental health, positive choices, with a positive outcome. They seek to strengthen the community through service and awareness of positive choices, particularly amongst teens.

The foundation will award a $1,000 scholarship to a graduating senior from both Delphos Jefferson and St John’s. They will be presented at each school’s respective scholarship banquet later this month. The Matt Ulrich Foundation also made a $2,100 direct donation to the Mentors3 project. The project linked area students with adult mentors in the community and sponsored events like the Aware Fair and the Escape Room.

Grothaus said this event would not be possible without the support of the community. “We would defiantly like to thank all the all the people that helped out. We had 30 volunteers and they deserve recognition for their effort.” He also encouraged anyone that wants to donate or learn more about the Matt Ulrich Foundation to visit their website at mattulrichfoundation.org.