The Dallas-based organizers of The Rose, a half marathon and 5K in Tyler, cancelled the race four days before the event.
There will be no refunds for those already signed up for the race, and it appears the company has ceased operations.
The race was scheduled for Sunday, with packet pickup beginning on Saturday.
At 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, Mellew Productions, the event organizer, sent out an email to those registered notifying them of the cancellation.
The race was cancelled due to “extremely low attendance.”
“Unfortunately there will be no refunds, but your T-shirt and medal will be mailed to you in the next few weeks for all that are registered,” the email read.
Mellew was promoting Tyler’s event as late as Tuesday morning with a post on its official page with a link to register for the now-cancelled race. That registration page was no longer operational as of 3 p.m. Wednesday.
“Seriously? How do you post this the day before you cancel the race?” Megan Riaz posted on the thread. “You people are the most unorganized race company I have ever seen. You should be ashamed of yourself. I hope you never come back to Tyler.”
The voicemail of Lewis A. George, a run producer who filed for a Tyler temporary street use permit, said the company “has suspended operations and is no longer in business.”
The Tyler Morning Telegraph has not been able to speak with a Mellew representative by phone or email.
It’s unclear what that means for the upcoming Tyler Azalea 10K and 5K, which is scheduled for March 24. That race is also organized by Mellew.
On The Rose event page, runners expressed disappointment about the cancellation. One said they had a hotel already booked.
“I can’t believe this is cancelled!” Mary Leler posted in the page. “It's upsetting that they would cancel so close to the event! What about the 5-mile race? Can we at least run that?”
The cost to run the half marathon was $75. The 5-mile race was $45, and there is an option “virtually race” for $35. That option includes a T-shirt and a medal, according to the event website.
A HOMETOWN FIX
A local race group is putting together a replacement race that’s been dubbed the “Homemade Half.”
“It’s pretty much the opposite of what make a race a race,” said Cori Moore with Tyler-based iTRI365 Timing and Event Production. “There’s nothing official - run at your own risk, and it’s really a community gathering.”
Local running groups plan to meet at Rose Rudman Park between 7:30 and 8 a.m. on Sunday. When there are enough runners for a race, it will start, Ms. Moore said. iTRI365 has leftover bibs, medals and freebies from previous events, and it has tents and other things needed for water stations on hand.
Sunday’s gathering will basically be a hodgepodge from previous ones. Ms. Moore said some runners are donating water and others are volunteering to run the rest stations.
“We'll be throwing together a box of bibs, some tents, some timing, leftover medals and whatever else we can scrounge up to make the best of an unfortunate situation,” according to a Facebook post announcing the Homemade Half. “This isn't an official race. In fact, it's not a race at all. Garmin wars allowed. Cutting the course is allowed. Finishers medals and bibs are whatever you get. Sense of humor is a must. The only guarantee is a good time.”
This story will be updated.
Mellew email sent to race participants:
“Mellew Productions regrets to inform you that the Rose, which was scheduled for October 15, 2017, has been cancelled due to extremely low attendance. Please accept our apologies with regard to this unfortunate matter.
Mellew Productions regrets any inconvenience this may have caused you, even though we tried our best to inform everyone as soon as possible.
Unfortunately there will be no refunds, but your T-shirt and medal will be mailed to you in the next few weeks for all that are registered.
If this is the last leg of your Four Seasons Challenge, we will also mail you that medal to you at the same time. Please email us to let us know if this is the case.
Mellew Productions appreciate your understanding in this matter.”