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Beargrease Announces Major Sponsorship Opportunity with Film Company

Alejandra Palacios
Updated: August 28, 2019 06:16 PM

The John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon announced a major partnership with a movie company from Los Angeles, California Wednesday that will benefit the marathon financially and will offer great exposure to the event.

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The sponsorship is with P12 Films. The Beargrease was chosen as one of the five nonprofits to benefit from a portion of the proceeds of a movie P12 Films is coming out with on Oct. 25 called “The Great Alaskan Race.”

The percentage of the proceeds wasn’t stated at the press conference. Monica Hendrickson, the Marketing & Outreach coordinator,  said it will be about a two year partnership and the percentage comes from the gross proceeds of the film. The Beargrease will help in the promotion of the film.

"We've taken a lot of years to build the momentum we’ve had with the Beargrease. This year will be great for us in terms of outreach and sponsorship as well as building a new spin on it," Hendrickson said.

In addition, P12 Films and The Beargrease are creating co-branded sponsorship opportunities for premiere events in New York, Los Angeles, Alaska, Minneapolis as well as additional markets.

The movie is based on a true story. Leonhard Seppala, a champion musher, is on a mission to deliver the anti-toxin to help with the diphtheria outbreak in Nome, Alaska from 1925. 

The film is described as telling the true story of Togo and Balto, who will forever be known as the most heroic lead dogs in history.

"The Great Alaskan Race will bring attention to the long and unique history of dog mushing and its role in northern Minnesota and Alaska," said Carmen Schempp, the President of the Beargrease Board of Directors.

The Beargrease board members said they're looking forward to this amazing opportunity and are excited to help promote the movie.

“This puts us at the forefront of the mushing world both in terms of spectators and people who don’t know anything about our region and our race. It brings forward the culture and history of northern Minnesota," said Hendrickson.

"When I heard about the Beargrease, I was intrigued by their traditions, their love of history and education, it tied in nicely to the overall mission of our company and especially this film," said Brian Presley, CEO and Founder of P12 Films.

There's plans to have actors from the film coming to the Northland for the Beargrease. Schempp said this partnership will help sustain the race and bring national and international attention to the event. The film will debut in at least 500 theaters.

"The film is going to be nationwide but it will also have the international impact. We have a lot of fans over in Japan and Europe so it’ll be fun to interact with them,” Hendrickson said.

There was also an announcement regarding the 2020 finish line location for the Beargrease 120 race. It will finish at the Trestle Inn Restaurant & Saloon.

"It's another historic place on the Northshore. Everyone knows where the Trestle Inn is and we’re excited to be partnering with them,” Hendrickson said. 

The Beargrease is a qualifier of the Iditarod in Alaska.

There will be a private screening in Duluth for the movie. The Beargrease will provide an update soon on the exact date of the screening.

To see the trailer of the film, click here.

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Alejandra Palacios

Copyright 2019 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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