BTN Communications, May 26, 2020

The ninth annual BTN Big 10K is transitioning to a virtual event in 2020, offering walkers or runners a chance to celebrate the Big Ten and participate in a 5K or 10K race on Sunday, July 26, from wherever they live.

Registration is now open at www.btnbig10k.com and for $20, runners will receive a school-specific shirt, B1G branded running buff/headband, race bib and finisher's certificate. Runners will also have access to a BTN Big 10K Spotify playlist which includes school fight songs and other music curated for use while training or racing. Participants are able to race through their neighborhood, on the treadmill, through their local park or on their favorite trail and upload results on the website, share photos of the experience and download a finishers certificate through Saturday, Aug. 1.

"This is an exciting opportunity for the Big Ten community to join together and show support for this historic event," said Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren. "I am truly looking forward to participating in my first BTN Big 10K this year and I hope that our tremendous alumni and fans will join me in an effort to stay healthy, support a charitable cause and represent their favorite Big Ten school. College sports have long offered a positive outlet to society, and while we all look forward to a day when that will be possible again, we know this race will bring our entire Big Ten family together with students, coaches, administrators, alumni and fans participating from around the globe."

BTN and the Big Ten will be supporting three charities for this year's race including longtime partners ALIVE Rescue, and Special Olympics Chicago, while also adding Feeding America for this year's race. During registration, fans will have an option to donate directly to any of the three designated charities.

Registration for the event begins today and will continue through Friday, July 10. Race packets will be mailed to runners prior to race day and participants will also receive a virtual sponsor goodie bag with unique offers for BTN Big 10K racers. For runners who can't compete on race day, the virtual race will be open for the following week.

"For the first time, Big Ten fans across the country and world will be able to participate in the BTN Big 10K no matter where they live," said BTN president Francois McGillicuddy. "We look forward to the day when we will once again bring thousands of people together in Chicago, but we're also proud to demonstrate how the Big Ten community showcases togetherness, even while walking and racing apart. We encourage everyone to join us on July 26 and represent their favorite Big Ten school in the BTN Big 10K."

Participants are also encouraged to send and receive updates via the BTN Big 10K Facebook group.