Old Bill's 2020 has modified its schedule due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, Old Bill's is shifting to a virtual, online format rather than in-person gatherings for its "Run Day Reimagined" on Sept. 12.
The move comes "in response to Teton County public health metrics," according to a Community Foundation of Jackson Hole press release. The foundation said it "will now present exclusively virtual and remote festivities" on Sept. 12.
“Old Bill’s is a time of community-wide generosity,” said Laurie Andrews, president of the Community Foundation of Jackson Hole. “This generosity also extends to embracing safety for the health of our community. Although we will miss gathering, the spirit of Old Bill’s is alive and thriving.”
The Sept. 12 activities will now take place as follows:
- 10 a.m. — Jackson residents are invited to step outside and ring cowbells or bang on pots and pans in the name of philanthropy.
- Also in the morning of Sept. 12, there will be an Old Bill's-themed radio program on 89.1 KHOL and a celebratory flyover by a vintage fighter jet trainer.
- Anytime during the day — The community is invited to run/walk/hike/bike a 5K route of their choosing. Route ideas will be posted at OldBills.org in late August. People who participate are asked to take photos and video and post them on social media with a #oldbills2020 hashtag. The videos and photos will be compiled into a video that will be distributed Sept. 14-18.
"Run Day Reimagined" will be the "culmination of 'Countdown Week' (Sept. 8-11), during which participating nonprofits will be spotlighted through a multi-faceted marketing and social media campaign," the release states.
Old Bill's Fun Run has raised over $173 million since 1997 to support Jackson Hole nonprofits, with Mr. and Mrs. Old Bill donating $500,000 each year as a challenge gift for the community. Gifts are accepted between Aug. 1 and Sept. 18 at 5 p.m.
Old Bill's organizers had announced in June that the format would need to be changed to avoid the typical crowd of 3,500 strong that typically gather in the Town Square. They're still gunning, though, for Old Bill's 2020 to be bigger than ever before.
“The impact is off the charts,” Andrews told the News&Guide last month. Nonprofits, the lifeblood of Old Bill’s, are “feeling the impact to their work and their ability to function, every single one.”