The organizers of this year's Fall Street Five-K will encourage runners to engage in a little reflection in addition to competition.
The announced last week that this year's race will include the participation of several firefighters running in their firefighting gear. They will leave the start line five minutes before anyone else, a release from the club said.
"The goal is to have the runners pass them on the course and reflect about 9/11," the release said.
Last year's Fall Street Five-K drew more than 200 runners, according to the release.
Full release follows below:
The Reading Athletic Club (RAC) is partnering with our local police and fire departments to organize the 2nd Annual Fall Street Five-K, which will kick off the annual Fall Street Faire on September 11th. The race was founded last year by Lori Haverty, program director at the RAC, and Police Officer, Justin Martel. The race begins at Washington Park and winds through the south side of town along Hillcrest Avenue, Oak Street, Pine Ridge Road, Walnut Street and Summer Avenue. Last year's race was a great success with over 200 runners crossing the finish line.
The race is a welcome addition to the Fall Street Faire bringing energy as well as the citizens of Reading and other local communities together. The partnership between the police and fire departments and the athletic club symbolizes how government and the private sector can form relationships for to benefit the community.
"We view the RAC as more than a premier athletic club. It is a living, breathing member of the local community," said Lori Haverty, Program Director at the RAC. "We want to give something back and bring people together. Whether you are a six minute miler or a jogger, we want as many people as possible to come from the community to participate in the race."
This year's race will be extra special because it falls on the 10th anniversary of 9/11.
"The purpose of this year's race is to get together with your friends, family and neighbors to run in remembrance of the victims of 9/11," said Officer Martel. "Of course, it's also a great way to have fun and challenge yourself."
As part of the remembrance, a number of area firefighters are planning to run the course in their firefighting gear. The firefighters will start five minutes before everyone else. The goal is to have the runners pass them on the course and reflect about 9/11---the victims, the aftermath, how we have changed, grown stronger, and more united. Lieutenant Rick Nelson of the fire department developed the idea and made contact with Lori and Officer Martel who were more than happy to bring him on board.
"You know, the more I thought about it, the more I knew this was the right memorial activity not only for us as firefighters, but also for the community," said Lieutenant Rick Nelson. "We already have commitments from close to twenty firefighters from area departments."
The race starts at 10:00 AM sharp on September 11th. Registration is now open and can be done online at: www.readingfallstreetfaire.com