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Thursday, November 23, 2000 -- Stephens City, VA
FCPRD Thanksgiving Day 5K
Story by Neal Riemenschneider

[Details] [Coverage] [Overall Results] [Results by Class]
[Pic Set 1] [Pic Set 2] [Pic Set 3]

FCPRD Thanksgiving Day 5K
Run for food!
So when is a 5K not a 5K? When the maintenance workers sweeping and marking the trail section of the Thanksgiving Day 5K make a left long before they are supposed to. The result? A course that was probably more likely 2.93 miles and not the 3.1 needed for a 5K.

But no matter, it was short for everyone and except for two folks who felt a need to complain, everyone was happy with their race, the course and the event itself.

There were 107 finishers in this 3rd annual event hosted by The Frederick County Parks and Recreation Department. The race benefited the Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Winchester.

FCPRD Thanksgiving Day 5K
Mark Stickley wins easily.
Both overall winners won by huge margins and were pre-race favorites. Mark Stickley, a 38 year-old native of Strasburg, VA, led from the start and was never pressed finishing in a time of 14:37. "It took me about a mile to really loosen up, but after that, I felt really good." The Application Engineer for Ashworth Brothers in Winchester hit the first mile in 4:50, Stickley stayed way out in front of the second place finisher, York, PA college runner Ryan Bayne (15:50).

Women's winner Ruth Riemenschneider also won by a large margin but didn't take the lead until near the 3/4-mile mark. "A very young girl went out very fast and I didn't know if she would come back. I thought she would but I wasn't sure," remarked the Power Bar sponsored Riemenschneider. The girl in question was 12 year old Laurie Murphy who not only was passed by Riemenschneider but was also passed by eventual second place finisher 51 year old Sandy Adams. Riemenschneider nailed down an 18:28 finish time, Adams turned in a 19:37 while Murphy faded badly but hung on for third finishing in 19:55.

FCPRD Thanksgiving Day 5K
A sprint to the finish.
Top masters in the race where long time area runners and educators Nancy Specht (21:53) and the joker writing this article. Specht devotes a large amount of her time coaching the Clarke County High School cross country and track teams.

Kudos to Diana Treece, Program Director for The Frederick County Parks and Recreation Department, for once again putting on another fine event. "We are really pleased with the effort of our volunteers and for the all the runners coming out to help us support our beneficiary, Big Brothers/Big Sister. We apologize for the course being short but we will make sure we get it right next year. Thanks to our efficient awards tabulations, we gave out over 60 awards and with an 8:30 AM start we were finished and cleaning up at 9:47 AM. This allows everyone to get on with their holiday plans."

As for my plans, I was content to visit family, eat too much, drink a wee bit too much wine, laugh, tell lies about my race, and share in some good family fellowship.