The Times West Virginian

Opinion

March 28, 2013

Pierpont Veterans 5K one more way to say thanks to all who have served

It’s been called the “tough­est 5K in West Virginia.”

But it’s for a great cause.

Individuals from around the community will gather at Veterans’ Square Plaza today for the third annual Pierpont Veterans 5K, formerly known as the Making Connections 5K. The race is designed to raise money for veterans’ education and scholarships at Pierpont Community & Technical College, and to date has raised more than $10,000 that has gone directly to veterans’ services.

There’s even a special category for veteran and active-duty runners, who are being encouraged to dress in a way that allows them to be recognizable as a veteran so that fans and people supporting the event can show their appreciation.

As Ron Weist, race director and director of community education for Pierpont Community & Technical College, said, the event is just one more way to say thanks.

“It’s a small token, but a very meaningful way that we can say thanks to those men and women who have served our country,” Weist said. “If we can help any of those veterans as they return to college by making their transition and education easier, better or more affordable, then we’re going to step up to the plate every time.”

In this instance, they’ll be stepping up to the starting line.

Participants at today’s 5K will begin at Veterans’ Square, go one block up Adams Street, then make a left to cross the Mollohan Bridge before attack­ing the incline up the Gateway Connector — “The challenge of the race comes in that hill. It’s a steady climb for a full mile,” Weist said — and, once they reach the Vietnam War and Korean War memorials, turn around and run back along the path they came.

And when they finally cross that finish line, whether with smiles on their faces or gasping for breath, whether they feel energized and victorious or as if their legs have turned to Jell-O, they will have the satisfaction of knowing their efforts were for a good cause.

Weist said the course symbolizes the true reason behind the event — supporting veterans.

“It’s symbolic that participants will be running from Veterans’ Square to the veterans’ memorials as well as the fact that our veterans have climbed a lot of hills for us, and us doing so is our thanks to them,” he said.

Of course, today’s event is geared to the entire family, and in addition to the 5K there will be a Kids’ K race for children 10 and under as well as a Mascot Invitational that will feature mascots from area schools, businesses and organizations facing off in a 100-meter dash.

And for those who don’t feel up to running in the 5K, a two-mile walk will be available that features a more manageable course that will allow participants to turn around before they reach the steepest part of the incline on the Gateway Connector.

Plus, during the 5K run and two-mile walk, spectators can enjoy music on the plaza, and various crafts and activities will be available for children.

“We wanted a festival-like atmosphere to encourage as much participation and involvement from the community as we can,” Weist said.

But the fun won’t overshadow the true purpose of today’s activities, and we encourage everyone to show their support and gratitude to the men and women who have served our country.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • Unsung heroes handling calls in emergencies are appreciated

    Thankfully, we live in a community where help is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, just by dialing three numbers — 9-1-1.
    During this week, which is recognized as National Public Safety Tele-Communicator’s Week nationwide, we need to remember that on the other end of that line are the men and women here in this county who are always there in case of accident, crimes, medical emergencies and any other catastrophic event.

    April 18, 2014

  • Message to ‘buckle up and park the phone’ is saving lives

    A figure that we haven’t seen that much in recent years is the highway death toll for a given period.
    Is the death toll up, down or just about the same as it was?
    The West Virginia Southern Regional Highway Safety Program has announced there were 325 highway fatalities in 2013, the second-lowest number on record.

    April 17, 2014

  • State native Burwell can ‘deliver results’ as Health and Human Services secretary

    Sylvia Mathews Burwell might not be a name with which most people are immediately familiar.
    For the past year, she has run the budget office under President Barack Obama.
    Prior to that, she served as president of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global Development Program and later the Wal-Mart Foundation.

    April 16, 2014

  • Marion scores well in recent health report but could do better

    When it comes to area-wide studies, especially on health, there’s usually good news and bad news.
    So was the recent report on the health of America’s counties released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation recently. The nationwide county study evaluated health outcomes and health factors, and ranked counties accordingly.

    April 13, 2014

  • COLUMN: ‘Instant’ news not always reliable

    Instant.
    That little word has a pretty big meaning. With origins that date back to the 15th century, it means urgent, current, immediate.
    But think about how that word has developed over the past few decades.
    Instant pudding. Instead of slaving over a hot stove for a few minutes, you can now pour cold milk and with a bit of stirring, instant pudding!

    April 13, 2014

  • Decision to be an organ donor can save lives

    Chelsea Clair watched as her father died waiting for a bone marrow transplant.
    So when she met Kyle Froelich at a car show in 2009 and heard about his struggles to find a kidney that would match his unique needs, she never hesitated to offer hers to the man she just met.

    April 11, 2014

  • Volunteers continue to have priceless impact on community

    Chances are, you know someone who volunteers. Perhaps you’re a volunteer yourself.
    Marion County is full of volunteers.
    They read to our youth.
    They assist nonprofit agencies.
    They serve on boards and committees.
    And in 2013, they spent a day picking up nearly 10 tons of garbage that had been tossed out on public property around Marion County.

    April 10, 2014

  • Proposed school calendar lives up to letter and spirit of law

    West Virginia state law requires that students be in a classroom for 180 days.

    April 9, 2014

  • Strong Fairmont General Hospital badly needed to serve our region

    Mere minutes often matter when it comes to emergency health care.
    That’s why we need a strong Fairmont General Hospital.
    When patients need the services of health-care professionals, having family and friends close at hand is often essential, and their presence may even lead to a better outcome.

    April 6, 2014

  • COLUMN: Fairmont General Hospital vital part of community

    There’s nothing better than holding a newborn baby. It gives you a little feeling that not only is everything right in the world, but this perfect little human represents hope of a future where things will be better than they are today.
    I had that blessed opportunity to hold that hopeful future in my arms last week when I visited my dear friend Jen and her newborn son Tristan at Fairmont General Hospital.

    April 6, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Politics
House Ads