LEWISTOWN - The Lake Dealerships, of Lewistown, will hold a 5K run/walk to benefit the Mifflin County Veterans Association at 9 a.m. Saturday at the Lake Chevrolet Dealership on Main Street, Lewistown.
The event idea began three months ago and was a collaborative effort of the management team of the Lake Dealerships, according to a a press release from the company.
The team felt that the veterans of Mifflin County, a very active group of individuals, weren't receiving a lot of funds, and needed local support, the release said. From this idea, the 5k run/walk was born, in hopes to raise money and recognize local veterans, as well as provide a fun time for the community to come together and make a difference.
With the dealerships completely absorbing the costs of the event, every penny raised will go toward the veterans, according to Jeff Adams, business development center director of the Lake Dealerships.
The run/walk, with a 5-kilometer course, will begin in the alley behind Lake Chevrolet and finish in the used car lot across the street. Water stations will be setup at mile and two mile splits, and both runners and walkers are encouraged to participate in the race. Community members of all ages have already signed up to participate, and Adams urged all those who are able to get involved as well.
Adams said that he is "really encouraged" by the number of people already signed up to participate, and hopes to continue the event for many years to come.
Awards will be given to the top male and female finishers, as well as the top three finishers in each age category. Male and female category age groups include: 13 and younger, 14-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59 and 60 and older. Awards will also be distributed to the first male and female veterans to finish, first male and female active duty finishers and the oldest and youngest finishers.
If the rewarding experience and fun awards aren't enough incentive, a cake in excess of 100 pounds, will also be there for all whom have come out to support the veterans association. T-shirts will also be given to all pre-registered racers, and a limited supply will also be available on the race day.
The event is already seeing a lot of community involvement, with 64 racers signed up as of Wednesday. Twenty-eight different businesses will be sponsoring the event, and several local officials have been involved to help make the event successful as well.
"We have had a great amount of help from the National Guard locally. Katie Mitchell, Dave Haubrick, and Greg and Roxanne Norris have been awesome," Adams said. "Jim Felmlee and the Borough have been helpful as well."
Lewistown Police Department will also be on scene to help with traffic and patrol the event.
Melanie Zangara will also be running the race, representing the Wounded Warriors Project. WWP's purpose is to raise awareness and enlist the public's aid for the needs of injured service members, to help injured service members aid and assist each other and to provide programs and services to meet their needs, according to the WWP website.
"We're very excited. This is something new and different ... we hope to see it grow year after year," said Luke Lake, general manager of the Lake Dealerships.
Entry fee for the race is $20, and all checks can be made payable to Mifflin County Veterans Association. Registration forms and more information for the race can be found on the Lake Dealership facebook page at www.facebook.com/lakeauto. The registration form can be directly printed from media.dealersocket.com/images/i1629/vetrun2.jpg.
Registration will also be open at 8 a.m. on the day of the race. Questions can be directed to Jeff Adams at 248-0151 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.