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Saturday, June 12, 1999 -- Ronceverte
Greenbrier River Distance Run
Story and photos by Don Parks

[Coverage/Recap] [Pic Set 1] [Pic Set 2] [Results]

Kiersten Curry
Kiersten Curry gets in the spirit of the Fun Run
The cool morning fog quickly burned off as the warm sunshine broke out for the start of the Greenbrier River Distance Run. At 8:30am Saturday, June 12th, the temperature was rising as folks from 6 to 76 got ready to race along the scenic Greenbrier River.

The racing is part of the annual Ronceverte River Festival that lasts for three days during the second weekend of June. Not only is there the 5 mile distance run and the 1 mile kids fun run, the weekend also includes live bands, a parade, a basketball tournament, fireworks, and much, much more.

Steve Crowder
Steve Crowder stayed in front from start to finish
When it came to running, the racing got underway with Steve Crowder immediately heading to the front. The mostly flat course was runner friendly even with the late morning heat and a hill thrown in late in the race. Wasting no time in getting to the finish, Crowder easily took first overall in a time of 26:20.

Running in second early in the race was 18-year-old Aaron Phillips. However, 43-year-old Tim Howard was able catch Phillips around the 2-mile mark and they ran together over the next several miles. With just a half-mile to go, the younger legs of Phillips prevailed as he was able to pick up the pace and race to a second place finish in 28:51. Howard came across the line soon after to take third overall in 29:09.

Greenbrier River
Lloyd Lilly enjoys a run along the Greenbrier River
The racing in the female ranks was decided early as the woman quickly distanced themselves from one another. The first to finish was Sharon Peake (32:25) with Kristina Rieckauer (38:34) taking second and Donna Akers (40:51) taking third.

Plenty of great refreshments and prizes were distributed after the racing. The bounty was provided by many great sponsors including Greenbrier Valley Medical Center, Organ Cave, Western Sizzlin', NAPA, America's Carpet Gallery, C&G Satellite, Ramey Motors, Allegheny T-Shirts, and Ashes Chimney Sweep. Also deserving of praise are the hard working volunteers from the Greenbrier County Emergency Ambulance crew (The "617") and the Ronceverte Police.

We'll be looking for you next year at the Ronceverte River Festival and the Greenbrier River Distance Run. Also, look for the return of the canoe race on the Greenbrier River as part of the 2000 festivities.