Well, the Ice Breaker has come and passed, and it seems that a race report is in order.
The weather was less than ideal, but better than terrible. 45 degrees, a cool wind, some cloud cover. After pinning numbers on 15 of the Miner Road Runners, I had a quick pre-race talk and moved towards the starting line. Most of the kids tried to get as close to the front of the pack as possible. There were about 1200 runners in the 3 mile race. Joe and I stayed near the back of the pack, waiting for the gun to go off. After the gun sounded, it took us 2-3 minutes to get to cross the starting line and begin the course. After some convicining, something that Joe is in need of from time to time, I was able to get him to run all of the blue arrows that marked our route. The arrows were anywhere from 50-100 feet long, every couple of blocks. We walked a "jogging pace", as Joe calls it, inbetween our running spurts. Peggy Perry, my supervisor, caught up with us about 1/2 mile into the race. We stayed together, the three of us, for the remainder of the run. So we went, walking (jogging) and running the blue arrows, through mile 1, and up to mile 2. Joe never lost steam. The thought of not finishing never crossed his mind. It was great. He was so determined. We rounded the final bend towards the finish. When the finish banner came into sight, Joe, noticably picked up his pace. The end was near and he knew he had it. We pushed towards the end. Peggy, Joe and I ran the last 100 feet of the run, through the finish line. Our finishing time? 1:03:48. Well actually, that was Joe and my finishing time. Turned out, Peggy beat us, she finished in 1:02 or so. She started the race later than us. Joe's mom was there to greet him at the line and many of the kids were still hanging around to cheer him in. It was a really great moment. Really great. I felt blessed to be a part of it. We had to quickly get our medals and get out of the finishing chute as the milers were just starting to finish. Everything disbanded fairly quickly. The kids left with their families to celebrate and I handed out finishing medals for a bit, before taking off on a lovely Sunday afternoon 10 miler. What a wonderful day. What a wonderful experience. All 15 kids finished. All of them were so proud of themselves and what they had done. It was great.