By Wanda Chandler
Special to the Register
The Firelands Area Runners Group and Friends of East Harbor State Park sponsored the event, with the proceeds from the registration fees going to the park for items and projects not funded by state funds. A major project for East Harbor State Park this year, is to refurbish the fishing pond to make it deeper and larger and most importantly, make it handicap-accessible.
Over the last ten years the proceeds have gone to purchase tables, flagpoles, and lighting.
There were approximately 95 runners/walkers of all ages on Saturday. The oldest runner was 81.
Johanna Moore, 80, an RN at Firelands Regional Medical Center in Sandusky,was one of the runners.
She's been running since she turned 50.
"Back then I was able to do a 5K in 23 minutes," Moore said. "But (I've) slowed down a bit to 53 minutes in today’s 5K.”
Moore was involved in the World Triathlons from ages 58 to 68. The Triathlon involves a 1-mile swim, a 25-mile bike ride, and a 6.2-mile run. She has done 13 of them all over the world and her best time was 3 hours.
When she started running she'd run 50 races a year, Moore said.
“That was back in my 8-minute mile (days)," she said.
For Moore, running was a family thing.
“My daughter started running and I just decided to go with her one day, and I got the bug,” she said.
Kathie Hammond, 70, finished with a time of 33:34. She also has been running for more than 30 years.
“I have never been athletic or anything," she said. "If you want to start running, the best thing to do is have a friend, because it keeps you going”.
Olivia Wetzel, 10, finished in second place in her division. She loves to run and her goal Saturday was to beat her old record — 34:43 — set last last year, which she did. Olivia finished with a time of 34:35.
After the race, refreshments were served by park volunteers, which included hot dogs, chips, water, fruit, cookies and snacks. Following the luncheon an awards ceremony was held to acknowledge the top finishers. Everyone who participated also received a commemorative gift.
The top finishers were:
•Runner division — Male, Brad Lieske, 18:24; female, Roberta Gangl, 22:51.
•Walker division — Male, Bill Anders, 39:20; female Tamara Limestahl, 38:03.