Home' Nonahood News : NONA 020116 Contents Behind the oink!
On March 26, piglets, pigs, and hogs will be run-
ning down the streets of Northlake Park. Don’t be
alarmed, however; it is all for a fun run called the Pig
Run of Lake Nona.
For the past six years, the Pig Run of Lake Nona has
been holding a 5k fun run “with a twist,” and it has be-
come a true Lake Nona tradition. Human racers choose
a category ranging from casual to hog and run 2.5 kilo-
meters, then enter the “Pig Pen,” where they eat their
desired number of delicious Dunkin Donuts (0-12), then
finish the remaining 2.5 kilometers. With all proceeds
going towards the Big Awesome Charity of Nona, or
B.A.C.O.N., this fun run is not only great for the family
to attend but genuinely helps out our local community.
I was fortunate enough to interview the creators
of the race, Dr. Michael Oslund, or (as he prefers to
be called) Mike, and his amazing wife, Janna Os-
lund. They are high school sweethearts, married for
14 years, and they live in the North Shore commu-
nity. They have two sweet and energetic girls who
both greeted me with a hug. At a quick glance, they
are your typical American family. He’s a local den-
tist, and she is a stay-at-home mom shuttling both
girls around to gymnastics and music lessons. Even
though they were both busy parents, when their girls
were still preschoolers, they started a race that is now
capped at 1,400 participants.
The first Pig Run was held in the summer of 2009
and began with the intent to put on a fun event.
Originally, each runner began by eating a burrito,
with a half dozen donuts half way through. There
were roughly 60 people who participated, most who
couldn’t eat the donuts, and it raised over $3,000. The
money was given to a local church. Mike and Janna
were excited they could contribute to a good cause
and realized how much fun people had. They knew it
had to be done again.
Year after year, the number of racers grew and
grew, and although they have a website and social
media, the race has grown mainly by word of mouth.
Two years ago, a virtual option was available for regis-
tration, and 46 states participated along with men and
women from our armed forces in 7 different countries.
Every soldier’s registration fee was donated by another
participant. By 2015, the Pig Run raised nearly $50,000
No one at the Pig Run or B.A.C.O.N. takes a salary;
all money raised after paying race expenses goes di-
rectly to great organizations. Last year’s funds were
donated to our local Nemours “Child Life” program
and Camp Boggy Creek. The “Child Life” program aids
patients and families coping with medical treatments.
Camp Boggy Creek provides a camping experience
for children ages 7-16 diagnosed with chronic or life-
I asked Mike and Janna, “So, how does it all come
together?” They looked at each other and said, “It’s
our family, our friends, and our local community
working as one.” Janna
goes door to door to local
businesses to gain spon-
sorships. Neighbor Laura
Tracht runs the silent
auction and is integral in
and funds. Community
members Bob and Mi-
chelle Parson organ-
ize the packets in their
home with hundreds
of boxes and a handful
of close friends stuff-
ing bags. Janna’s par-
ents look after her girls
for the weekend. Mike’s
parents help run packet
pick up and load and un-
load trucks while wearing headsets so everyone can
stay in contact with each other. Neighborhood pho-
tographers Renee Freidel and Lonnie Rhodes take all
the photos for the pig run. Community member Jay
McQuillan emcees the “pig pen” and keeps everyone
laughing while they eat their donuts. Friends pick up
garbage cans and load the water containers for the
runners. Lake Nona High School volunteers perform
and assist the day of the run. Sponsorship amounts are
kept low, so small, local business can participate. And
the whole Pig Run wouldn’t be possible without the do-
nut donation by Larry and Sonia Lemos at the Dunkin
Donuts on Narcoossee and Moss Park Rd.
Talking to Mike and Janna, I understood why so
many people have fallen in love with the Pig Run and
look forward to this Lake Nona tradition. I also left
with the feeling that just one family can really make a
difference. The Pig Run started as a simple, fun event
and has grown to be a wonderful contributor to our
local organizations. On March 26, I plan on taking my
family and participating in the event. Hope to see you
there! Oink, oink!
PIG RUN creators, Dr. Michael Oslund and his wife, Janna Oslund are pic-
tured with the run’s mascots.
IN ITS “Half Dozenth” year, the Pig Run of Lake Nona is not just a family-friendly event. It has raised nearly
$50,000 for charities in the Lake Nona area.
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12 FEBRUARY 2016
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