Albertus Koett, artistic director of Tree House Youth Theatre, ran a marathon last weekend as a fundraiser for the non-profit arts group, which lost revenues last season due to the pandemic. Money is still being collected though Canada Helps. (Contributed photo).

Albertus Koett, artistic director of Tree House Youth Theatre, ran a marathon last weekend as a fundraiser for the non-profit arts group, which lost revenues last season due to the pandemic. Money is still being collected though Canada Helps. (Contributed photo).

Red Deer man runs marathon as fundraiser for Tree House Youth Theatre

The arts group lost revenue due to the pandemic

There were no cheering sections, due to the pandemic, but Albertus Koett ran nearly 43 kilometres last weekend as a fundraiser for Tree House Youth Theatre.

Koett’s first-ever marathon through the city has raised $2,800, so far, towards recouping some of the ticket and registration revenues that were lost last season, due to COVID-19 protocols.

Money is still being collected through Canada Helps (with information at www.treehouseyouththeatre.ca/marathon-fundraiser) towards a goal of $4,000.

Koett said he began training a year ago and has run more than 110 hours and 1,100 km. “Running has been a wonderful activity to do, for not only my physical, but my mental health as well,” he said.

He opted to turn his first marathon into a fundraiser because Tree House Youth Theatre, like all arts groups, has taken a big revenue hit during the pandemic.

A December production of Romeo and Juliet could only be streamed for online viewing — as will the upcoming One-Act Festival, which will air on the Tree House website in July. Koett said only a fraction of normal revenues can be made up through streaming shows instead of putting on live performances.

But Tree House plans to run summer camps in July and August for kids age six to eight, with reduced class sizes. And Koett will start taking registrations for fall classes in mid-June.

While he hopes for a more regular 2021-22 season, he’s still planning to run another marathon for Tree House Youth Theatre next spring. Koett said, “This has been a good fundraiser for us, and I love running.”

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