Cat Bird Seat

By David Yon


Wow! That was quite the newspaper coverage for the marathon. I do not know whether is was just because it moved to downtown, the hard work of Fred and Margarete Deckert and Dana Stetson or just a slow news day, but it was great to see. People really read the stories and poured through the results, both runners and non-runners. It seemed like everywhere I went on Monday people commented on the race. Some told me what a great marathon I had run. (My time of just over 1:30 minutes would have enabled me to retire from the practice of law and become a full time and wealthy runner – if I had covered the full 26.219 miles in that time and not just 13.1.) Others really seemed to appreciate the impressive efforts of the winner and asked me if I had taken a nap on the course somewhere. There was also a great story on Jessie Close. I do not know what you think, but I sure miss having Jessie at races. I hope his renewed vigor for training means we will see him back at the front of the pack in our races again soon. In any event thanks to the Democrat and especially to St. Clair Murraine. St. Clair has put a lot of time and effort into his coverage of some of our best events.

I am very interested in hearing your comments on the course, the downtown location, the date for the race and any other pluses or minuses. Capital City Bank was a great sponsor. The bank’s fast track mortgage program, made for a nice catch line and hopefully they received some real positive exposure from the event. I hope they return next year and help make the race an even bigger, better event. Everyone I spoke with liked the idea of a downtown course and I think Fred, Margarete and Dana proved a downtown race could work. I think the general consensus was the course itself could use some modifications, though. I do not know if we have ever had a race with so many volunteers. I know Fred was on the phone till all hours rounding people up. It is terrific to see people respond as they did.

The awards banquet was a big success. All of the award winners were well deserving and I hope you take the time to read about their efforts. Our runners of the year – Julie Clark and Howard Andrews – were genuinely surprised. Their reactions were great. Julie is yet another graduate of Dot Skofronick’s beginning runners class. There is a long list of people Dot as gently or not so gently gotten involved in running. Her class has been a tremendous success over the years and something the club can be very proud of supporting. I am still trying to get even with her for asking me to help her out with Turkey Trot (Chenoweth at the time) sometime in 1985, I think. Joe Dexter became the newest member of the Hall of Fame. You could spend the entire Newletter detailing all the contributions Joe has made to the club.

Doug Gorton and Gary Kenney are organizing teams to represent GWTC for the Jacksonville River Run. I will let you know how they do. Gary Griffin has a wonderful cause on May 8th and 9th, The American Cancer Society Relay for Life. The event is designed to raise money for the American Cancer Society and is an 18 hour relay. You can participate individually or as a team. Teams consist of 15 people and require a $150 entry fee. The club has elected to pay the entry fee for one team. Each team’s goal is to raise $1500. If you are interested in participating contact Gary or me either one and check out his article on page ??. We are also moving forward on the idea of a cross country grand prix team competition series. The races on the circuit again are likely to be Tom Brown, Prefontaine, The Wilderness Walkabout and Pine Run. The awards will be given at a summer party still in the planning stages for late summer or early fall at Ann Draper’s house. Scoring will be age and sex graded. More details to come as soon as the awards committee recovers from year end efforts.

Spring is just around the corner, so enjoy the longer days and we will see you somewhere on the roads.