Stephen Vance, Staff
Organizers of the annual Meaford Harbour 5K Run/Walk in support of the Meaford Hospital Foundation are hoping for another banner year as they gear up for this year’s event, which takes place on Saturday, July 8.
Last year a record 531 participants raised $65,000 for the Foundation, and organizers are hoping to see more participants register in advance online in order to avoid delays on the day of the event.
“Last year roughly two-thirds of the participants registered online,” organizer Anita Hunter told The Independent. “It’s so much better when people register online. It cuts down on a lot of work on the morning of the event.”
Hunter said that early online registration also allows organizers to ensure that they have enough t-shirts on hand in the correct sizes when participants arrive at the harbour to begin their run, walk, or stroll along the five-kilometre route.
Those who register on-line by May 15 will save $10 off the entry fee, and their name will go into a draw for a $200 gift certificate to Runner’s Den in Owen Sound. This gift certificate is sponsored by Black Angus Meats.
The annual Harbour Run/Walk built upon the success of the annual Apple Harvest Race which was held in Meaford for 25 years. When that race came to an end, Brian Renken, race director for the Meaford Harbour 5k Run/Walk, saw an opportunity to revive the event in support of the hospital. The event has proved to be a huge success for the Hospital Foundation, having raised more than $386,500 for medical equipment at Meaford’s hospital in its first 20 years.
Organizers have set a goal to raise $50,000 from this year’s event.
The excitement and energy levels will be raised again this year with the return of The Urban Slide, which raised money for the Hospital Foundation at its inaugural event last year. This year The Urban Slide will bring not one, but two days of fun to the Nelson Street Hill.
“Once again, this year the Meaford Harbour 5K Run/Walk is taking place on the same day as the Urban Slide that is happening on Nelson St. The Urban Slide is a 1,000 ft. slip-and-slide brought to town by local company 365 Sports, who have chosen to return for their second year, only this year they will be operating on Friday and Saturday,” noted event organizers.
The date for this year’s event is Saturday, July 8, starting at 9 a.m. at the Meaford Harbour pavilion. T-shirts and fabric bags will be given to the first 300 registrants. Participants are encouraged to pre-register on-line at www.onlineregistrations.ca/meafordharbour to avoid disappointment.
There will also be registration the morning of between 7:45 and 8:45 a.m. as well as advance registration on Friday afternoon, July 7, at the Harbour Pavilion between 4 – 7 p.m. Participants are encouraged to obtain pledges and there are gifts for the top pledge earners.
This year, as well as a prize table there is an autographed Argos football as a Top Pledge Earner prize. Pledges can be made on-line to your favourite participant at www.onlineregistrations.ca/meafordharbour/list.php or pledge sheets can be printed from the Foundation web site at www.mhfoundation.ca.