The flagship event of our Foundation that started it all, the Race For a Soldier is a 10 miler and 5 k, held in the tranquil and historic city of Gig Harbor.

Race For A Soldier is more than a run through the scenic Pacific Northwest. This is a race run for hope, support and a better future for the men and women that serve our country and communities. This is a race founded by a determined mother, who lost her soldier son, who proudly and courageously served our nation. A son whose life at 27, was cut short, like far too many of our veterans today.

Why we run

We run because the longest journey many of our soldiers face is not the plane ride home from distant battle fields, but rather the struggle they face upon returning.

The statistics are staggering regarding the numbers of service men and women suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress (PTS) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), many of whom are unaware of or unable to access the resources and support they need. Mental health issues related to service (and specifically, not exclusively, service in war), can be severe. We have expanded our support in 2018 to included our First Responders, as their growth and mental health is equally important to our community.

Many honorable men and women, fearing all hope is lost, are making desperate, unhealthy and sometimes life ending choices.

We are on a mission to make a significant difference in this struggle. Through our many events we raise money and awareness to support programs offering essential healing needed by our veterans and first responders.

We make a difference

As heavy as this burden might seem, as monumental as this epidemic is, we believe we can make a difference. The Permission To Start Dreaming Foundation knows that our soldiers need our help and believes we can change the tide. Communities can make a difference in the fight to stop this epidemic and the Race For A Soldier is our anchor of hope, our way to show support and raise awareness and a chance to raise valuable funds that will ensure more soldiers get the help they need before it’s too late.

With the help of countless volunteers, family and friends of The Permission To Start Dreaming Foundation, a half marathon contested in Gig Harbor, WA was started in the fall of 2011. It wildly exceeded expectations, drawing an average of 1,500 runners in the first three years

Nearly $300,000 raised to help soldiers and their families

Since 2011, nearly $300,000 has been contributed to organizations helping soldiers and their families recover from war and readjust to life back home.

When you support this race – whether you run, walk, volunteer, donate, simply watch or all of the above – you are making a difference in the lives our brave soldiers and their families. You are showing your support and your belief, making this a brighter future for all soldiers, their families and our community. No longer can we wait to act. The race is on and we can win it together!

10-mile run, 5k walk/run and Virtual Runner


Thank you for your interest in Race For A Soldier and in joining the Volunteer Operations Team! V-OPS is a group of people that are willing to take time to make a difference, and is very important to our success. Thank you for being part of something great!!!

What you get when you join V-OPS Team:

  1. Awesome short sleeve shirt with V-OPS Team logo (please wear this when you volunteer).
  2. See and feel what an army of Operations Volunteers can do to make a difference.

Event Details

September 15, 2019

10 Miler begins at 7:45 am

5K begins at 8:00 am 

Start/Finish Line: 

Tom Taylor Family YMCA 

10550 Harbor Hill Drive

Gig Harbor, WA

View Map »

5k Race Map. Download PDF here.

10 mile Race Map. Download PDF here.


We are grateful for your generosity and support. Your gift is the spark that offers the lasting chance.

Do You Need Help?

If you are in a crisis and need to talk right away, or you are concerned about somebody else, there is always someone to listen and help.