Heidelberg 5K run/walk benefits community
Troy Knauss was operational chair of the first 5K run/walk fundraiser at Heidelberg Church on Sept. 22.
Many participants waited until the day of the event to sign up, with Kelly Mahoney, Colleen Andrews and Amy Peters helping out at the registration table.
Knauss said he was very excited to be part of the first 5K to help support the local community.
Brian Lenhart, 5K chairman, said the 5K was all about health and living in the Lehigh Valley.
One hundred percent of the proceeds will be going to the Goodwill Fire Company of Germansville, the Kellyn Foundation, and various healthy-living charities in the Lehigh Valley.
The fundraiser started as an idea at Heidelberg Church and grew into a community movement.
“I’ve been so impressed by the volunteers and sponsors who came together to make it happen,” Lenhart said. “I’m looking forward to the event in future years.”
Bill Casaceli, head chef at the Kellyn Foundation, said the vision is focused on childhood obesity.
The foundation has a health center in Tatamy. Founders were Eric Ruth and Dr. Meagan Grega.
“We had the vision 11 years ago of helping families and moved into the elementary schools starting with third grade,” Casaceli said. “We are now throughout the Lehigh Valley and beyond.”
Jerry Padden of Cat Country 96 radio said it was awesome the number of people who came out to run.
“Everybody will have a good day,” he said.
Food trucks came and provided breakfast, lunch or just snacks.
CoreLife Eatery offered fruit punch and beet lemonade. The Hamilton Crossing company offered a 25-percent discount to anyone with a wrist band.
Polish Water Ice of Fogelsville offered ice cream, cakes and water ice in their venue, which had seating.
Texas BBQ brisket and falafel were some of the many sandwiches offered. It’s been a family-run business for eight years.
Knause welcomed everyone. He said, I’ve been so impressed with the volunteers. Molly Lenhart sang the national anthem and then Goodwill Fire Company blew the horn to start the race.
More than 220 racers took off at the sound and 15 minutes later the first runners were returning.
Sponsors were BB&T bank, Mike Fink, Perfect 6 Produce Marketing, Cat Country 96, Lehigh Valley Press, New Tripoli Bank, First American Abstract, St. Luke’s OMS, Bear Creek Resort, Auto Care Center, The Neff’s National Bank, Sorensen Construction, Olde Homestead, Good Farm, Elite Energy, Nestle, CoreLife, Berger Sanitation and Stellar Company.
One shirt runner’s shirt had printed on it: “I run so I can eat.” Another racer wore a chicken cap and said it is his running cap.
The weather was cool and pleasant for running but it warmed up so quickly that later runners were sweating by the time they made it around.
Northern Valley Ambulance and Goodwill firefighters were both on hand for the event.
Winners received gift cards from Curious Goods in addition to their medals. Photographs were taken in front of a John Deere Tractor, straw bales and mums.
There were too few runners in the 20-29 age group to fill the prize places so the announcer said it seemed that age group does not get up early.