By Alissa Bridges

All runners, from marathon runners to those new to the sport, are invited to come out to Cork and Olive Wine Bar and Cafe the second Thursday of each month to Run For A Cause. For the Thursday, November 8, 6:30 p.m. the fun run from 1-5K, will offer proceeds from wine sales for the full day of the event along with a raffle and auction to benefit Honor Flight of West Central Florida in honor of Veterans Day. Honor Flight has a sole mission to take local WWII Vets to their WWII Memorial in Washington, D.C. for free.

Marathon runner and organizer Benjamin Mena came up with the idea for Run For A Cause one night at Cork and Olive. “I went to the owners of Cork & Olive with the idea and they were immediately on board with the idea and asked me to set everything up, so I did.”

Run For A Cause has been around for about seven months and has been a success from it’s very first event. “On our very first run we had 55 people and things just keep getting bigger and bigger. For each run we have had, we average between 50-60 people each month,” said Mena.

Each run starts at Cork and Olive and goes along Brandon Parkway, with each runner having the opportunity to choose how far they wish to run. “The routes are set up so that people can decide how far they want to go,” said Mena.

After the run portion of the evening, participants have the chance to wind down inside Cork & Olive with some glasses of wine and the chance to browse the bottle selections. “The whole place is packed for each run and people buy drinks to increase Cork and Olive’s sales. The proceeds from the purchases then go towards the charity that month,” said Mena.

Run For A Cause has supported charities such as Live Strong, Girls On The Run, Families Fighting Cancer, Homeless Emergency Project and also has plans to support a toy drive in December.

Cork and Olive Wine Bar and Café is located at 2086 Badlands St. in Brandon. For more information about Run For A Cause and to find out the next run date, e-mail Mena at

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