Hundreds stripped down to their underwear and ran in the Cupid’s Undie Run this Saturday at World Live Cafe to raise money for neurofibromatosis.
Cupid’s Charity has been a recognized charitable organization since 2012 and has been hosting their Undie Run every February for seven years, this year taking place in over 35 cities across the country.
All of Cupid’s Charity’s proceeds go towards neurofibromatosis (NF) research. NF is a rare genetic disorder, affecting one in 3,000 births, causing tumors to grow in the brain, spinal cord and nerves. It can be treated, but cannot be cured. With the nationwide fundraising efforts like the Undie Run, they have raised $18.9 million to date, partnering with the Children’s Tumor Foundation, and many others, to help put an end to NF.
The 2020 Undie Run in Philadelphia took place from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 8, at the World Live Cafe on 30th and Walnut Street.
After gathering, the “mile-ish” run started at 2 p.m., and then participants returned to World Live Cafe for drinks and dancing — all in the name of raising money for cancer.
Participants gathered at the Cafe, showing up half-naked, according to their website “because those affected with NF can’t cover up their tumors to feel more comfortable, so why should we?”
People were decked out in “f&ck cancer” shirts and ‘I take my pants off for charity’ underwear, merchandise that can be found on their online store. They donned red bathrobes, heart glasses and other relevant accessories. School buses brought teams of runners, who poured off the buses wearing nothing but underwear, hula skirts and leis or matching shirts.
When registering for the event, you pay $45 and are set up with fundraising instructions. Participants can start and join fundraising groups, and the groups who raise certain amounts get fun rewards, like t-shirts and underwear (and an open bar at the afterparty).
Fundraising teams like “I See Philly,” “South Philly Streakers” and “Team Maddie” all compete to fundraise the most money for the cause. “Team Maddie” shirts were especially prominent at this event, now ranked number one in terms of funds raised locally with over $30,000, almost 50 percent more than the team’s original goal of $21,000.
Maddie is a 17-year-old being treated for Type 1 NF at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. She is featured on the Cupid website, along with other children living with NF.
Families can search for children with NF on the Children’s Hospital under their “Impact” tab, where they have the option to “Meet the Champions” or “Submit Your Champion.” You can donate to the cause on the website, whether it is toward a specific participant or a general donation.
Cupid’s Charity’s is likely to surpass its fundraising goal of $135,000 this year. They have already reached $130,000, with 18 more cities yet to host an Undie Run.
Hundreds of people running through the streets of Philadelphia and many other cities, half-naked and in a ridiculous amount of pink and red, are sure to catch people’s attention. The Cupid’s Undie Run does its job as a creative way to raise money and awareness for a good cause.
So, Drexel students, make sure you join thousands of others across the country in taking your pants off for charity next February!