A popular charity run in Thunder Bay has participants raising questions about its overhead fees.

The inaugural Run or Dye, which took place last Saturday at Boulevard Lake, raised $5,000 for the Children’s Centre Foundation. However, more than 2,000 people signed up for the event and each paid at least $30, which meant the organization received 12 times more than it gave to the charity.

The organizers cited considerable overhead fees and said the event actually lost money.

Despite complaints from participants, Tom Walters, CEO of the Children’s Centre Foundation, said he is satisfied with the results, adding that the foundation cannot organize an event of this size without outside help.

"We wouldn't be able to put on an event like that by ourselves, so we were quite pleased that they agreed to have us as one of the recipients of the funds," he said.

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Karen Maki is one of the runnrs of Run or Dye. (Adam Burns/CBC)

Karen Maki, one of the runners, said she is aware of online complaints against the organizers, but she says she knew what she was getting when she paid her fee.

"Could they donate more? Perhaps. I don't know, because I don't know their overhead," she said, "So I don't like to pass judgment or opinion on something I don't have all the facts for."

If Run or Dye comes back to Thunder Bay, Maki said she will run again since she found it a fun, easy way to donate to charity.