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.
It’s been called the “toughest 5K in West Virginia.”
Prevention must remain focus when dealing with cruel black lung disease
“Preventable, but not curable.”
That’s how Joe Main, assistant secretary of labor for Mine Safety and Health, describes black lung disease.
He could also use the word “deadly.”
According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, black lung has killed more than 76,000 miners since 1968.
If something seems too good to be true, then assume that it is
Scam. noun. A confidence game or other fraudulent scheme, especially for making a quick profit; swindle.
This is a word that Marion Countians have heard a lot about in the past few years. And the problem appears to be one that is getting worse every day.
State must convince parents, schools about benefits of Common Core
It’s always nice to have a little bit of background information before diving into something new.
So we have to agree with West Virginia Board of Education president Gayle Manchin when she says the state should have done a better job of explaining Common Core standards when they were first introduced.
Those standards, part of a national educational initiative that sets learning goals designed to prepare students in kindergarten through 12th grade for college and career, will be fully implemented in every West Virginia school district next month.
Time is now for Tomblin to support King Coal Highway
U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., is asking Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to add the King Coal Highway project to West Virginia’s six-year highway improvement plan. It is a logical request, and one that Tomblin should act promptly on.
United effort to keep NASA in Fairmont is essential project
The high-technology sector is obviously vital to the economy of North Central West Virginia.
That’s why a strong, united effort to keep the NASA Independent Verification and Validation Program in Fairmont is absolutely essential.
COLUMN: Calling all readers: Be heard
I love to talk to readers.
I love to hear concerns they have about stories we’ve written, things they think should be included in the newspaper and things they think shouldn’t be.
Korean War veterans are deserving of a memorial
NEEDED: A total of $10,000 for the Korean War Memorial this year.
And a good man has been placed in charge of the funding. Charlie Reese, former president of the Marion County Chamber of Commerce, is now director of the Marion County Development Office. His task was to make a recommendation as to what steps are necessary to keep the project moving.
Roll up your sleeves, give blood and you can save lives
It takes up to 100 units of blood to save the life of someone who sustains life-threatening injuries in a vehicle accident.
We’re hoping that the number of people who come to Fairmont Senior High School on Friday for and American Red Cross blood drive will exceed that amount.
Vehicles and motorcycles must share the road safely
The days are long. The weather is superb. There’s plenty of leisure time in these lazy days of summer.
It’s the perfect time to take a long motorcycle ride.
It’s also the perfect opportunity for us to take the time to remind not only riders but drivers of the need to share the road. And we feel compelled to mention it because just within the month of July, there have been two motorcycle-versus-car accidents within the City of Fairmont alone — one with severe injuries sustained by the motorcyclist and the other with less serious injury.
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