Gotta Run: Bits and pieces going forward

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 4, 2023

The next race in the area is a new one with a strong message. Scheduled for next Saturday, March 11, is the Jace Landon TBI Aftercare Awareness 5K at Knox Middle School. Serving as the race director is Jace’s mother, Nichole Steadman. She said, “This race means a lot to me personally because I lost my son Jace due to a traumatic brain injury. He was in a serious car accident in December of 2020 where he suffered a severe TBI and subsequently took his life on Mother’s Day 2022. Too many people with TBIs suffer in silence. March is Brain Injury Awareness Month, and this gives me the opportunity to spread awareness throughout our community about the importance of TBI aftercare.”

Runners and walkers of all abilities are invited for the 9am 5K start. A fun run for kids 12 and under will follow on the Knox track after the 5K. Commemorative dri-fit shirts, plenty of awards and refreshments will be part of Nichole’s effort to share more information about traumatic brain injury. Registration is open at

The Forum of Salisbury has been a big part of fitness opportunities in Rowan County for 25 years. Their anniversary was Wednesday, March 1. The business opened on March 1, 1998, as Gold’s Gym and became The Forum in 2006. The Forum has strong community ties to numerous non-profits, most notably Rowan Helping Ministries and Prevent Child Abuse Rowan. The Butterball 5K, Salisbury’s Thanksgiving morning holiday tradition, annually draws the largest 5K participation in Salisbury. The Forum also hosts the Resolution Run 5K on New Year’s Day.

GM Rayna Gardner said, “We rarely say no to any local organization. We sponsor every high school for one sport or another and every yearbook. We do smaller stuff for the middle schools and elementary schools. Right now, with the school system, we provide $1000 a month in cash and memberships for The Forum and SoFul to their staff members of the month (there are two of them a month). We do a bazillion golf tournaments and so forth and so on. We buy enough BBQ chicken fundraiser plates to feed our whole staff many times over. Matt has always been super about giving back to the community that has been so good to him!”

The Forum has had the same owners (Marsh and Steve Safrit), the same Childcare Manager and Personal Training Manager for all of its 25 years. Gardner said they are proud to have helped over 30,000 people from our area in their individual fitness journeys.

The Salisbury Rowan Runners and Salisbury Parks and Recreation kick off the spring Beginning Runners Class on Tuesday, March 14, at the Salisbury PD at 6 p.m. The class meets on Tuesdays for eight weeks and will culminate with a graduation ceremony at this year’s Bare Bones 5K on May 6 at Knox Middle School.

My own journey across all 100 counties nearly kicked off this past Thursday, but one day this coming week I’ll begin to visit all 100 counties over the next year. I will drive to the county seat, then run 1½ miles in each one and take time to learn a little more about the history of the county and county seat. As usual on my cycling adventures, I’ll take a few photos and hopefully meet some interesting people. I am anticipating being hungry quite a bit, so I hope to visit some unique local business for food. Might be a restaurant, a convenience store or maybe even a donut shop. And I am looking for the historic courthouses that many of the county seats still have. My journey, so my rules. The Post will publish a map showing my progress.

Look for more information on the BRC classes and the Jace Landon 5K, along with other upcoming events at