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Retro Terry Fox sneakers sell out in minutes ahead of first-time virtual run

The sale of the retro gear comes in the lead up to the first ever virtual race to be held on the 40th anniversary of the Marathon for Hope.
In a retro nod to Terry Fox's classic sneakers, Adidas released a new pair in time for the Marathon
In a retro nod to Terry Fox's classic sneakers, Adidas released a new pair in time for the Marathon of Hopes' 40th anniversary. The shows, as well as T-shirts, sold out within minutes Wednesday.

The 40th annual Terry Fox run was supposed to be special — and it will be despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Beginning today, May 20, supporters were asked to sign up for the first ever virtual run in support of the Terry Fox Foundation.

This is the first time a virtual Terry Fox Run will be held in 650 communities across Canada — including the Tri-Cities — and plans are for people to hold their own runs on Sept. 20, 2020, with funds raised going towards cancer research.

To celebrate the 40th anniversary year, Adidas Canada had announced a limited edition nine-piece collection of Terry Fox merchandise, including the re-release of the original Orion running shoes Fox wore during his run.

With a goal of raising $1 million, all net proceeds of the collection were set to go to The Terry Fox Foundation.

But when the T-shirts and limited edition sneakers — reminiscent of the classic, three-stripe runner worn by Fox throughout his journey — went on sale Wednesday morning, they sold out within minutes.

Comments on the Adidas website show customers ready to spend $130 for the shoes or $40 for the T-shirt instead received notices that inventory was not available.

A few minutes after the sale started, Adidas posted an advisory asking customers to "stay tuned for a restock."

Adidas Canada says on its site that all net proceeds from the commemorative collection will go to The Terry Fox Foundation and the company didn't respond to a request for comment about its stock shortage.

Those who register for this year’s Run before May 31st will be entered into a draw to win a pair of limited-edition ORION shoes. 

“The Terry Fox Foundation is honoured that Adidas Canada continues their support with such an incredible initiative,” stated foundation interim executive director, Ara Sahakian in a press release.

Here’s how the virtual fundraiser works:

  • Go to to register.
  • Plan out your run, whether it be around your neighbourhood, backyard or down the street. Participants can also walk or ride their route.
  • The idea is to register as an individual, family or virtual team and start your fundraising effort.
  • Then on Sept. 20, do your promised activity to help raise funds for cancer research in support of Terry Fox’s mission when the Port Coquitlam-raised man embarked on his storied Marathon of Hope.

Fox began his run on April 12, 1980 in St. John's, Newfoundland and was forced to end it 143 days later in Northern Ontario after cancer spread to his lungs.

During the run and in the years following, the Marathon of Hope has raised more than $750 million worldwide for cancer research.

— with files from the Canadian Press