Great fun on the River RunIt may have snowed the night before in Hibbing and poured freezing cold rain on the football players and fans in Cloquet, but a little cold weather failed to deter hundreds of runners Saturday morning at the fifth annual Cloquet River Run.
By: Jana Peterson, Pine Journal
It may have snowed the night before in Hibbing and poured freezing cold rain on the football players and fans in Cloquet, but a little cold weather failed to deter hundreds of runners Saturday morning at the fifth annual Cloquet River Run.
The brisk temperatures certainly didn’t bother Ted Heikkila, who set a 5K course record with a time of 16:33 (in running shorts and a tank top, no less). The 19-year-old native of Delano, Minn., who is attending the University of Minnesota this year, said he just got serious about running a year ago, and made the UMD cross country team this year. It was a close race throughout between Heikkila and the second-place finisher, Kyle Larson of Duluth, who also ran – and won – the one-mile race just prior to the 5K. The 5K top female finisher was Molly Pennings, 37, of Culver, Minn., with a time of 21:14.
Larson, 22, also set a course record with a time of 5:06 in the one-mile race. The top female finisher in the mile race was 13-year-old Alison Schubitzke of Cloquet in 7:26.
While the winners set records, many runners and walkers rejoiced in simply finishing the race, whether they were running alone, with friends, kids, spouses or the family dog. A few crossed the finish line hand-in-hand, others smiled or fist pumped as they were greeted by an enthusiastic group of fans blowing party horns and other noisemakers.
What a party it was, and the whole event took place in and around the school it will benefit, Cloquet’s Churchill Elementary. Proceeds from the race will go toward health-related equipment and programs as well as technology, such as mobile iPads.
“It’s a wonderful family event that brings Churchill staff, families, the community and non-community members into our school,” said Principal David Wangen, noting that more than 200 people also attended the Pasta and Salad Feed put on by the Cloquet Educational Foundation at the school the night before. “Thanks to all who supported our students this weekend!”
Main sponsors were Gordy’s Hi-Hat and Warming House. Next year’s Cloquet River Run events are scheduled for Sept. 27-28. A total of 425 runners and walkers competed in the 5K (269 finishers) and one-mile (156 finishers) races Saturday.