I had a streak going for a few months; I sent out an email before the new month started. I didn’t make it this month, though I’ve been thinking about how (not what) to write this email. Usually I mention races – both past and upcoming, along with training, and maybe some other events. This month I need to start with some sad news. We lost a few Track Club members and friends in May. I received several phone calls and text messages the morning of the 7th saying Jim Frazier passed away in his sleep overnight. I went numb! How could this be? Jim was a great runner, an awesome athlete, barely 60 years old. We were good friends and training partners going back to the days when we were both active duty at Hurlburt. I, just like everyone that knew him, will certainly miss Jim. The Track Club lost another long time member last week: Billie Madero. Billie hadn’t been around much the last few years. She suffered a fall that broke her up quite badly. Prior to that, Billie was at every race, every Saturday, whether it was a 5K, 10K, triathlon; you name it she was there for as long as I can remember. I always went up and said, “Hi”. She would grab my forearm. I don’t know if she was pulling herself up or pulling me down. And then she’s say, “You know something…” and then go on with whatever she wanted to talk about. Billie will have a memorial service at Barrankas on June 11th. I have contact info. If you are interested, get with me and I will share a phone number. I have one more name to mention, although he was not a Track Club member. He was a Cap’t Fun Runner and supported our races either by running in them or by volunteering for them. That person is Danny Turner. I don’t know circumstances; I only get notified via Cap’t Fun emails. But I do know Danny would give you the shirt off his back. When he said “The water stop will be taken care of.” That meant that he’d pick everything up, take it out, have a ton of people to make noise and pass out water, clean everything up, police up the rest of the course, and then return everything back to the start. Danny and his wife Judy loved running our races; Lucky Leprechaun, Ho Ho Hustle, and Billy Bowlegs were just a few of their favorites. Prayers go out to the families of our departed friends.
Well, we still have races happening. Turnout has been lower than normal and hopefully as more and more people get vaccinated so will the participation numbers. Billy Bowlegs 5K is one of those races we’d like to see more participants. Our numbers are low…and we scaled back and still haven’t reached our goal of 200. And it’s not too late to register. You can register in person at Run With It today (Thurs 5/3) from 4:00-6:00 or on active.com till midnight, and race morning at Ft Walton Beach High School (by the track) from 6:00-7:30. There are still shirts available. Registration is $30 or less in person. We have unique awards and a cool post-race with food, beverages, and a live band.
There’s only one other race scheduled in June and that is the Father’s Day 5K, June 19, 0800 at Prop’s by the Brooks Bridge. Registration info is on our website, so take a look and get signed up. The new course is much nicer that the old Lovejoy route, so I am told.
We will have a board meeting this month, June 9, 1800 at Rick’s Crab Trap on Eglin Pkwy. It will be short and sweet as we get ready for our summer vacation (no July meeting).
Our pre-fourth of July training run is scheduled for June 26, 0800, at Garniers Beach Park in Ft Walton Beach. Billie Adams will do a low country boil for us. We will also have beverages. This is a free event, but we do ask that you RSVP (to me) by June 16 so we can give an accurate head count.
Lastly, our new website is almost complete. Hopefully, we will changeover in the next two weeks. The format will be different; you will notice that right away. It will also be compatible with all platforms; iOs, Android, Mac, Microsoft, or whatever else there is. This process has taken several years and the light at the end of the tunnel is suddenly much brighter. Let’s hope for the best. I know there will be growing pains with the new site; we’ll just take them in stride.