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David Freeze: Gotta Run

Upcoming racing opportunities, all different

Seldom do I just talk races in this column, but this is a good week for it. We have three races coming up, all different in their approach. And they are all fun and for a great cause.

First up is the Will Run for Food 5K at Centenary Methodist Church on Feb. 29, a Leap Year race. This race has been around for eight years and raises funds to package dried meals for Servants with a Heart of Charlotte. Race start is at 10 a.m. with a ½ mile fun run afterwards. This 5K has a full array of awards, including top three overall male and female and three deep in 14 age groups. Top three kids, 12 and under, will get awards in the fun run. Every participant gets a T-shirt and refreshments. Each race entry will cover packaging of 133 meals.

In between is the Any Where Any Way 5K, that can be completed any time between March 1-17. Run or walk anywhere, inside or outside. You can even swim, bike or take a group exercise class to qualify. Run/walk distance is 3.1 miles, swim distance is 1 mile, bike distance is 10 miles and the fitness class must be at least one hour.

Enter your dog for an extra $5 and get a custom YMCA bandana. If you are out of the area, add another $5 to get your shirt and medal mailed to you. New this year is the Check-In Challenge. Visit any of the event sponsors from March 1-17 for the chance to win more prizes. Two grand prizes are one night stays at the Cherry Treesort. Pick up your challenge card at any YMCA front desk.

Each person who completes their 5K gets a dri-fit T-shirt and a medal. Registration is available at any Rowan or Cabarrus County YMCA or online at www.rowanymca.org. All proceeds go to the YMCA Annual Campaign that provides assistance to at-risk youth, families and seniors.

And last is a low key but highly attended race called the Love Thy Neighbor 5K/10K on March 21 at Concordia Lutheran Church. Love Thy Neighbor, a cooperation between Concordia and Trinity Lutheran Churches, has been raising funds for the medical needs of a specific person annually for seven years. This year’s event benefits Crystal Wing who is battling stage 4 colon cancer. Crystal is 36 years old with a two-year-old daughter. The races start at 8 a.m. and registration includes breakfast. There is a huge silent auction, and tickets sold for a chance to win a 52-inch zero turn mower. All proceeds go to help Crystal. The Atwell Volunteer Fire Department will keep the race course safe.

Race registration includes breakfast and for all others, they get breakfast by donation. Both the 5K and 10K start at 8 a.m. and a fun run follows completion of those two races at 10 a.m.

Also, it is almost time for SRR’s Spring Beginning Runners Class, often called the BRC. Once again, Salisbury Parks and Recreation, the Salisbury Police Department and Novant Health will join with the Salisbury Rowan Runners to offer the eight week training session beginning on Tuesday, March 17. Each Tuesday, participants will meet at the PD at 6 p.m. for 30 minutes of classroom training before hitting the downtown streets and sidewalks for distances that start with a half mile and culminating in a 3.1 mile 5K. Everyone gets a training program and individual assistance along the way. Classroom topics include running form, shoes and equipment, stretching and strengthening, nutrition and injury prevention.

More information on all three races, the BRC and plenty more can found at www.salisburyrowanrunners.org and registration is available at www.runsignup.com

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