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The Zooey Fund Race

Fri September 1 - Fri December 1 Worcester, MA 01609 US


Welcome to The Zooey Fund Race! 

The idea is simple, though a little unorthodox. Just like many “Walks for the Cure” or “Fun Runs” for other good causes, this event is a fundraiser where the proceeds go to–you guessed it–The Zooey Fund. However, instead of the race occurring on a single morning on a specified trail, this race unfolds over a 3-month period wherever you are: September 1st - December 1st. You simply log your miles each day (or however often you remember), and the Race page will keep track of the rest for you. 

Why should I join The Zooey Fund Race?

When we were thinking of ways to kick off fundraising for The Zooey Fund, a 3-month-long “race” emerged as the perfect idea. The timing tracks Brent and Kelsey’s sabbatical period, when they’ll be bounding about the Outback and New Zealand, Bali and Florida. While they won’t be in direct communication during the sabbatical, this is a little way to remain connected across the “miles.” And what a lovely way to show your support–by trying to keep up with them and making a donation to a good cause!

But if you need a little more ideas for why you should join The Zooey Fund Race, consider a few other reasons. Maybe you’d like to be more healthfully-minded this fall, or maybe you’d like an easy way to log your miles. Are you just a wee bit competitive and would like to see who tops the leaderboard each week? Want to try to outpace Brent and Kelsey on their sabbatical adventures? Well, they’ll be tracking their miles, too. Or maybe you already walk, run, bike, or mosey a few miles every day already; in that case, this is an easy way to put those miles to a good cause (in addition to your own health!).

Why do I need to register?

The registration process and sign up fee are important because the money we raise for registrations goes directly to support The Zooey Fund. If the cost is prohibitive, reach out to us to let us know. Additionally, this website keeps track of all the participants for us, so that we can say thank you after the race ends (December 1st, remember). 

Also, there are ways you can “upgrade” your donation if you are interested in giving more support to the cause. These options allow you to select FBCWoo or The Zooey Fund t-shirts, magnets, and/or our inaugural 2024 FBCWoof Calendar (Pets of FBCWoo) for purchase. Any proceeds (minus the cost of printing) from these purchases will go to The Zooey Fund. 

What is The Zooey Fund?

The Zooey Fund was created to offer micro-grants to families confronting the heavy burden of emergency veterinary or chronic care expenses for their beloved pets. If your non-human family members have ever experienced a scare or needed long-term treatment, you know very well how crushing the financial toll can be. Sadly, many families are forced to make the heart-breaking decision to euthanize because the best or only treatment options are cost-prohibitive. The Zooey Fund hopes to one day eliminate this option for people by sharing financial assistance that unlocks more options for care, and ultimately, more time with their loved one.

Your donations to The Zooey Fund are more than financial contributions. You are a partner in sharing the greatest gift of all: more time. 

Are my donations tax deductible?

Yes! The Zooey Fund is housed as a ministry of The First Baptist Church of Worcester, MA, but every dollar you donate to The Zooey Fund will go to those who need it for emergency veterinary or chronic long-term care expenses (minus any cost for printing the t-shirts, etc.). In other words, your donations will not go toward the overall budget or minstries of the church. If you’d like a record of your donation for tax-filing purposes, you may request a receipt of your donation by emailing


Why is it called “The Zooey Fund?”

The Zooey Fund was created in honor of Zooey Deschanel Newberry, who was Brent’s beloved canine companion and best friend. She was curious, discerning, incredibly gentle, strong, resilient, and determined German Shepherd/Lab mix. She also happened to be perfect. 

In late 2021, Zooey was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease and the early stages of heart disease. She fought bravely for another 18 months, though it wasn’t without struggles. The expenses of long-term care increased as her condition ebbed and flowed. She always rallied and recovered, in large part due to her spirit, but also thanks to the wonderful care of Tufts Animal Hospital. 

Along the way, Brent was offered gifts that offset some of the high costs of her care, which gave more financial cushion for him to continue pursuing the best options she could handle. In the end, this generosity gave Zooey the greatest gift of all: more time. 

She succumbed to her disease on April 5, 2023, as she was euthanized at her home in Worcester, Massachusetts. She was surrounded by love and family and friends waiting outside to honor her as Brent and Kelsey carried her out to the hearse. 

As a way to honor her memory and allow her spirit to continue loving others, The Zooey Fund was started to bear witness to the pain and struggles of loving senior pets. We wish for all pets to have the same possibilities as Zooey had: the best treatment, expanding care, more time, and love that lasts forever. 

If you have recently lost a loved one, will you consider donating in their honor? 

Will you join our movement to spread love and more time for beloved pets?


111 Park Avenue
(but really anywhere you are)
Worcester, MA US 01609

Race Contact Info

If you have any questions about this race, click the button below.

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