Spirit Run is presented by Newport-Mesa Spirit Run, Inc. (NMSRI), a California nonprofit 501(c)(3) public benfit corporation. Spirit Run's net proceeds benefit youth education and fitness.  

From 1983-2010, Spirit Run was presented by five Newport Beach elementary schools. In 2010, Newport-Mesa Spirit Run, Inc. (NMSRI) was founded to continue Spirit Run and to share its net proceeds with schools throughout the Newport-Mesa Unified School District (NMUSD).

In 2017, NMSRI introduced "Dash for Cash" for schools and high school teams outside NMUSD. Schools and teams participating in "Dash for Cash" earn a minimum of 25%, and as much as 45%, of registration fees paid by their supporters.

Our Mission

NMSRI is operated by volunteers dedicated to promoting childhood fitness and education.

NMSRI's mission is (1) to present a community event promoting childhood fitness; (2) to provide free training, event entries, and bus transportation to local students who are unable to pay; and (3) to provide an opportunity to receive a share of net proceeds to local schools, teams, and clubs demonstrating commitment to our mission.

“Spirit Run is the premier youth road-racing event in Southern California, being the only one I know of that treats youth distance runners as competitors in the sport, rather than simply adding ‘kid’ races as a sideshow to an adult-oriented event. The energy in the Youth Only 5K delivers race times not seen in typical ‘all-ages’ events, and the unique Elite 1-Mile road race is a barnburner that leaves spectators staring at the clock with disbelief.”
— Coach Jerry Palazzo, Equalizers Track Club.

What We've Achieved


  • More than $2,000,000 in cash donated to local schools.

  • $345,000 in cash donated to local schools in last nine years alone.

  • Since 2011, NMSRI has conducted free training at elementary schools to prepare students for Spirit Run.

  • Since 2011, NMSRI has donated bus transportation to Spirit Run to students and families residing in Costa Mesa.

  • Since 2011, NMSRI has donated more than 2,500 free event entries to underprivileged students.

YOuth Fitness

  • With 7 youth races and the Toddler Trot, NMSRI offers the broadest range of youth races of any road racing event.

  • Rather than offering a single "kids fun run," NMSRI groups children by age into 6 separate races so the little ones aren't required to race the older children.

  • NMSRI presents the unique "Youth 5k" where children race one another without adult interference and a child breaks the finish line ribbon.