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Cedar Point 5K hits the ground running

John Benson • May 12, 2015 at 6:28 PM

Want to go?

  • WHAT: Cedar Point 5K Challenge Race

  • WHEN: 7 a.m. June 19

  • WHERE: Cedar Point, 1 Cedar Point Dr., Sandusky  

  • COST: $25/racer (includes free parking all day, race entry, a Tech race performance shirt and $12 off park admission discount coupon)

  • INFO: cedarpoint5kchallenge.com

Just like at your local swimming pool or in school hallways, running is not allowed at Cedar Point. But that’s going to change for about an hour on Father’s Day when the park hosts its inaugural Cedar Point 5K Challenge Race from 7 to 8 a.m. on June 19 at the popular tourist destination.

“They’ll be running under the Corkscrew, right next to Millennium Force, around Maverick and through a couple of the kids’ areas,” said Cedar Point Sales-Promotions Manager Bryan Edwards. “You’ll have almost the entire race course inside the gates of Cedar Point. The start and finish lines are just outside of the gate. Logistically it gave us more room so we could have spectators there to watch people start and finish the race.”

For $25, participating racers are allowed in the park for the race, receive a Tech race performance shirt and a coupon for $12 off park admission that day. Also, they won’t have to pay for parking, which is normally $10. Edwards said racers can show up around 6 a.m. to prepare for the 7 a.m. starting gun. The roughly 3-mile run will be over by 8 a.m., in time for the park’s normal hours of operation.

While Cedar Point hosted a fun-run decades ago, the idea of this new event was conceived by local track and cross country coaches from Perkins High School, Sandusky Central Catholic School and Sandusky High School as an athletic boosters fundraiser.

“It sounded like a fun event, and the schools really had everything together when they presented the idea,” Edwards said. “So we decided to give it a try this year. We’re hoping to get a lot of local support, attract a lot of casual runners and word of mouth will quickly spread and this thing can explode on us and take off. It’s a great location, unique location. You can have a 5K race anywhere, but I don’t think you’ll beat the scenery that you’ll see here at Cedar Point when you run around the entire park. Anything we can do to help out the community we’re always interested in lending a hand.”

Medals featuring Snoopy will be given to the overall male and female finishers, plus the first three male and female placers in the following age groups: 13 and under, 14 to 19, 20 to 29, 30 to 39, 40 to 49, 50 to 59 and 60 and older. So could this turn into an annual event?

“We’ll see how the first one goes, but we’d love it to,” Edwards said. “So far we’re closing in on about 200 runners, which is great for a first-year event. But I can see this thing growing years down the road, where we could have a longer race and maybe even a kids’ race.”

Perhaps the best plan of action for runners is finishing the race, enjoying the awards ceremony, entering the park and getting right on last year’s new ride Shoot The Rapids.

“That’s right, “Edwards said, “Cool off and clean up.”

For more information, visit CedarPoint5Kchallenge.com.

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