Omni Running Sponsors Wakefield Educational Foundation
The New England 65+ Runners Club sponsors the Wakefield Educational Foundation with their annual, Run for All Ages 5K race. For the past three years Omni Running has sponsored the Run for All Ages with the My First 5K Medal.
Omni Running Sponsorship continues to grow each year. For the first time the My First 5K Medal was offered on the registration form and web page. This was a big help increasing our sponsorship.
Run For All Ages 2016
This race is a celebration of running for all ages and well into our golden years. Two runners were in their 90s: Lou Peters and Robert Hunter. The oldest woman to finish, Phyllis Mays, is in her 80s. The oldest man to finish in the top 10 was Fabio Piergentili of Andover, aged 53 in 8th place at 17:45.
The youngest runners were 8 years old! Several more were 9 year olds, Tweens and Teens.
The top male runner was Antonio Wilson of Everett with a finish time of 15:19 and an impressive pace of 4:56! I believe that this was a new course record.
The top 10 finishers all ran a 6:00 pace or less. The top 28 finishers all ran a 7:00 pace or less. Five of those runners were in their 60s!
The top female runner was Meghan Weaver of Peabody with a finish time of 19:11 and a 6:11 pace!
Runners come from all over to run this race. Cameron Dorn is from South Carolina and came in 4th over all. All of the New England states, except Connecticut, were represented. Several runners came in from New York and Florida to run the race. Possibly students or Snow Birds.
Encouraging Young Runners
I have run this race several times but found it distracting to both run and sponsor the race.
Providing medals to first time runners requires my full attention. I enjoy talking to these new runners and seeing the look in their eye. They may be a little nervous, but they are also proud and happy to be participating in this event.
I love talking to them one runner to another. While mom or dad stands by I talk to them as equals. I may be old enough to be their grand father, but today we are two runners talking about a race.
The medal is a symbol of their accomplishment. Today they will accomplish and complete something few of their friends have, a 5K race. I hope that talking to them as equals helps them feel comfortable and accepted into the running culture. My goal is to help create life time runners.
Affirmations of love and pride
Not everyone who runs their first 5K is a youngster. The first person to buy a medal three years ago was close to retirement. She was just as excited about running her first race as a person a quarter of her age!
This year I got to put medals around the neck of several First 5K runners. Most of them were not yet teens but one runner was an adult. I’ll never forget the smiles on their faces.
One girl seemed a little embarrassed that her mother bought a medal for her. I’m sure that as time goes by she will look at that medal and remember how proud her mother is of her.
Every child wants their parents to be proud of them, even if it appears otherwise. Some people go their entire life seeking that affirmation from the most important person in their lives.
Several children received that affirmation of pride and love at the Run for All Ages 2016. It was an honor to be a small part of that.