Suffield Parks and Rec. hosts annual road races

By Lisa Stone - ReminderNews
Suffield - posted Thu., Sep. 12, 2013
With only two minutes until race time, Stuart Jensen gets into the right mindset. Photos by Lisa Stone.
With only two minutes until race time, Stuart Jensen gets into the right mindset. Photos by Lisa Stone.

Runners flocked to Suffield Middle School for one last summer run when Suffield Parks and Recreation held its annual 10K Race and 5K Run on Sept. 7. A total of 228 runners joined in on the fun.

Kristina O’Brien started her day by completing the 5K with a time of 21:01. “It was fun. I do it every year,” said O’Brien. “I’ll do it again next year, too.”

Runners filled the parking lot of the school, well equipped with water bottles and music devices. Participants were stretching and getting mentally in the zone before the announcement came over the speakers that the race was about to begin.

“I do this race each year,” said Michelle Hanson. “My husband, Ryan, usually does the 5K runs, but this year, I talked him into doing the 10K with me. We have a great time and I really look forward to it each year.”

Dan Vindigni was stretching with only a couple of minutes until race time. “This is my third year at this race. It is a challenging race,” said Vindigni. “There are 67 hills to climb. I know what is in store for me. I’ll be fine.”

This event was built on the cooperation of many people, including: Wendy LaMontagne, director of Suffield Parks and Rec.; Marie Bourque, administrative assistant; Donna Carney-Bastryzcki, special programs coordinator; and Cindy M. Fisher, recreation supervisor.

There were paramedics on hand if there were any injuries and drinks were provided for the runners. “We look forward to this event each year,” said LaMontagne. “Each year we have a great turnout. This is a special event. We don’t anticipate any problems. We have water for the runners along with orange slices, granola bars and apple sauce,” added LaMontagne. “We also had numerous raffles and random prizes at the end of each race, some donated by area businesses such as The Basketball Hall of Fame, Unique Fitness, Wilma’s Scoop Du Jour and Bradley Bowl. We are so thankful for their donations.”

“It was a beautiful day with an outstanding crowd of spectators as well as runners,” said Fisher. “This is a very popular event each year with many of the same runners who return, as well as new runners to our races that experience a scenic route through the historic district, including open space, farmland and picturesque view of Suffield.”

The Suffield Parks and Rec. Department wanted to thank its sponsors for the road race, including the First National Bank of Suffield, Fleet Bank of West Hartford, other gift sponsors and all the volunteers and people of the town organizations that helped make this event such a success.

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