People are demanding refunds after The Rose half-marathon in Tyler, Texas was suddenly canceled.
Katie Reid spent a lot of time preparing for this race. She and her family do about four half marathons a year.
Reid and her son each spent $75 for registration and were looking forward to The Rose on Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017. On Wednesday she got an email saying the race was cancelled. "They just said it was because of low attendance" saod Reid. "I was like ‘What?’"
Now she just wants her money back.
The race is hosted by Mellew Productions, Inc. They've hosted the "Big D" in Dallas, the Texas Half in Irving, and other events in DFW for more than 20 years. The organizers said there would be no refunds.
“I immediately got online and I wanted to see what everybody else's reaction,” said Reid.
Angry runners vented on Facebook wanting to know why they weren't given more advanced notice and wanting to know where their money was.
The latest news from around North Texas.
Reid called NBC 5 Responds and we tracked down the owner of Mellew Productions. The owner, Lewis George, says he ran out of money to operate the business and had to close it, for now.
"We have always had a no refund policy that is included in their waiver. It is an industry-wide policy, and since I have no money and have discontinued my revenue stream, refunds will not happen," said George. "However should I salvage the company in some way, yes, they will be able to transfer, but at this moment I cannot guarantee that."
This didn't sit well with Reid. "There's something really suspicious about pulling out four days before the event," said Reid.
The company was still promoting the race on its Facebook page the day before it canceled. "I'm frustrated more than anything," said Reid.
It’s important to note that races do get canceled for a number of reasons, but that’s why it’s so important for our local runners to:
- Check the fine print. Find out what happens to your registration fee in the event of a cancellation
- You may also want to purchase race insurance if offered
- Always check to make sure event has proper permits from the host city.
The city of Tyler tells NBC 5 responds Mellew Productions did have proper permits for the race and informed them of the cancellation.
Some of the runners still plan on going out to Tyler to run this Sunday despite the cancellation. They’re calling it the "Homemade Half."