WILMINGTON — Fundraising efforts for the UNCW track and field team have taken off.

The "Save UNCW Track" group is teaming up with local businesses to reach their goal of $250,000 by May 31st. The TrySports store in Mayfaire is one of them.

"We think it's really important because there's a ton of endurance community members that use the track and there's just such a big population of runners, tri-athletes and endurance athletes here. We also have a few UNCW employees that work here," said TrySports employee, Tara Martine.

Martine is organizing a 5K race on April 26.

"That will help raise money and also get a lot of people out here to show their support for the UNCW track team," said Martine. 

Wilmington Taco Factory is also showing their support. For everyone who writes "UNCW track" on their order form, they'll donate 15 percent of the check to "Save UNCW Track".

"It's really great for the local businesses to do that. It means that they care about the sport, they care about the athletes that are there and they're willing to give back,” said Save UNCW Track group leader Dr. Roy Love.

The group's website shows they've already raised almost $50,000.

“There is $22,000 additionally coming in today, you know through the weekend. So the real number is closer to $70,000," said Dr. Love. 

They also have to  secure a minimum of $800,000 by next February. That money would go towards renovating track and field facilities. Folks like Martine are doing all they can to help the "Save UNCW Track" group make it to their fundraising finish line.

"It's a very strong program with a lot of gifted athletes and it would just be a tragedy to see that go away, especially for as many runners that we have in the community and other endurance athletes," said Martine.

To donate to the group and learn more about upcoming events, visit www.saveuncwtrack.com