Scattered showers Sunday did not dampen the enthusiasm of those interviewed before the start of a 5k race in Cooperstown.
More than 1,000 people participated in Sunday’s Girls on the Run of Central New York 11th Annual 5k race, which started at 2 p.m. at the Clark Sports Center. This included about 600 members of the regional Girls on the Run program. While the race serves as the culmination of the 10-week program that starts in mid-March and ends in mid-June, the noncompetitive race is open to all, council director Sally Trosset said. The turnout was about the same as last year.
Girls on the Run is a character development program for girls in third through eighth grades, according to the organization’s website.
Delaware Academy Elementary Girls on the Run coach Pam Dorr said Sunday’s event “is better than Christmas.” She said she likes seeing the girls’ “pride and sense of accomplishment. It’s really impressive.”
There are 50 teams at 30 locations in area elementary, middle schools and community centers, Trosset said. The programs meet twice a week and includes life lessons such as bullying prevention, media awareness and community service. The focus is on girls as individuals, as part of a group and interacting with the world around them. The 5k race is the only time of the year that all the girls are together.
Those who shared an opinion on the event included two girls from Delaware Academy Elementary School.
Ava Green, 11, said the first year she was eligible she didn’t participate, but when a friend said she enjoyed it, Green decided to give it a try. “I like how it gives solutions to problems,” like bullying, she said. “It’s a lot of fun to run,” whether it is as part of a game or around the track, she said.