Bear the Torch – Fundraiser

Bowdoin Cross Country and Track and Field are teaming up with Black Owned Maine to ‘Bear the Torch’! This match-per-mile fundraising event will occur July 28th through August 4th.

Through work centered on business education, marketing, and community building Black Owned Maine (BOM) aims to build and sustain an ecosystem of Black businesses across Maine. Through Bear the Torch in 2020 we were able to raise $6,700 for BOM to provide mini-grants for Black owned businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. We also ran a collective of 7,900 miles.

This year we are aiming higher, and our fundraising efforts will go towards BOM’s new co-working and event space for Black entrepreneurs. This space is in collaboration with Signature Soul – a fusion of Rhythm + Rhyme + Reason + Soul Resonance made up of the eclectic Hip Hop + Spoken Word Duo Marco Soulo & Signature MiMi. They create and share poetry, music, & art that capture our experiences and shed light on our aspirations. They facilitate creative expression labs and poetry workshops that encourage participants to explore and experiment with their V.O.I.C.E. They strive towards sustaining an interdependent network of artistic activists, free-thinkers, and community connectors who are dedicated to making our world more creative and peace-full.

We hope to raise $10,000 and run 10,000 miles! Here’s how it works:

Commit to PLEDGEMOVE, and SHARE.

PLEDGE by completing this form. The link is live! Get started now!

  1. Common Good Challenge: Pledge to donate any amount you would like. Any donation is welcome!
  2. Bear The Torch Challenge: Pledge to donate a chosen amount for each mile collectively contributed between July 28th–August 4th (ex. ½¢ per mile, 1¢ per mile, 2¢ per mile). We will reach out about the sum of your pledge at the end of the week.
  3. Pledge Miles Only: Every mile you pledge to contribute will raise our total mileage and total funds.


From July 28th through August 4th tally up the total number of miles you run, walk, bike, and move. You can get creative in your movement (ex. rollerblading, canoeing, longboarding, swimming, etc.)!

Submit through the pledge form and resubmit if your total mileage increases. You may also join our Strava challenge!*


Follow and @blackownedmaine for updates on our progress and to learn more about Black owned businesses in Maine. Check out BOM’s website, and share the fundraiser pledge form with all of your friends and family members so that Bear the Torch can have an exponential impact.

Questions? We’d love to hear from you. Email Jada Scotland [email protected], Lauren Traum [email protected], or Coach Marcques Houston [email protected]

* Excited to join the Strava Challenge? When you follow “Bowdoin Bear the Torch 2022” on Strava you will be added to a cohort competing against other cohorts to accomplish the greatest mileage July 28th–August 4th. You also have the opportunity to make your own cohort of up to 24 participants by emailing a list of group members and a group name to Emma Noel [email protected].