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“Dispatch” is a new online column from Triathlete Editor-at-Large Holly Bennett that will feature pro updates, industry news, happenings afield and otherwise random reports related to multi-sport. Look for “Dispatch” every Thursday on Triathlete.com.
The crowd was as pumped up and passionate as the athletes at any Kona roll-down ceremony. But instead of coveted slots to race on the Big Island, the people in attendance hoped to win one of numerous raffle prizes at the recent Boom Yogurt Bar fundraiser for the University of Colorado Triathlon Team. The prizes ranged from triathlon gear to gift certificates from Boulder businesses to a membership at pro triathlete hot-spot Flatirons Athletic Club. Several local pros, including Tim O’Donnell, Julie Dibens, Mary Beth Ellis, Tom Lowe and Boom’s owner, Matt “Boom Boom” Reed, were on hand to enjoy the festivities and the frozen treats. Between raffle ticket sales and Boom’s donation of 15% of the day’s proceeds, the team’s takeaway reached several hundred dollars, a welcome financial boost for the Buffs.
Triathlon is a club sport at CU, despite the team’s dominance as 12-time national champions since they first banded together in 1993. CU triathletes do not benefit from sport scholarships doled out by the University. Instead, they rely mostly on donations from an alumni-formed 501(c)(3) non-profit and team sponsor discounts, as well as a University stipend and team members’ own bank accounts to fund their travel expenses, coaching, gear costs and race entry fees.
“With over 100 due-paying members, it can be very costly to rent trailers for the bikes, rent vans to drive or buy plane tickets. As we get more money from fundraisers and donations we are able to use these funds to lessen the burden on our athletes,” said Jesse Frank, a Mechanical Engineering undergraduate and CU Triathlon Team Officer. Last Friday’s event was particularly timely, as 33 team members and two coaches will make the trek to Tuscaloosa, Ala., to compete in Saturday’s 2012 USA Triathlon Collegiate National Championship.
Boom Yogurt Bar is a natural fit as a team sponsor. “With Matty and Kelly Reed [Matt’s wife, herself a former professional triathlete] running Boom they really understand the needs and wants of triathletes,” said Frank, who manages marketing for the team. “From the start, Boom has been exceptionally supportive. When we approached them about the fundraiser they jumped on board immediately and helped plan the event.”
Boom not only provides discounted tasty and nutritious self-serve treats to this team of hungry triathletes, it offers them a meeting spot from which to start workouts and refuel afterward. The team also has access to the Boom Room (the yogurt shop’s community room) for meetings and social gatherings.
The Reeds are committed to giving back to the sport that is a central focus of their family’s life. “Matt and I feel that the CU triathlon team has great energy and a positive attitude and we’re thrilled to sponsor the team,” Kelly Reed said. “We feel it is important to help the younger triathlon generation experience our sport.”
The value of a yummy-in-the-tummy product sponsor does not go unnoticed by these up-and-coming triathletes. “We have a bunch of frozen yogurt fanatics on the team, so Boom is the perfect place for us to get our froyo fix,” said Frank, whose own favorite Boom flavors are any of the Mix1 Recovery flavors. “They are absolutely delicious!” he exclaimed.
Learn more about BOOM Yogurt Bar – including which flavors are tapped daily: Boomyogurtbar.com
Look for Holly’s monthly column “Confessions of an Age-Grouper” in Triathlete magazine.