CELORON – Chautauqua Striders finished their final race of their winter season over the weekend, with many participants hungry for warmer weather.
The Winter 5K Series includes five races spread over the wintery months with the hopes of keeping the community active during a time where there are not many options available.
Executive Director Jen Swan-Leuze touts the diversity of participants, with those of different sizes, shape, or even age taking part.
“This series is available to any runner, younger participants have come to run but, we generally have them with their parents, but anybody can do it,” explained Swan-Leuze.
Sunday’s race had a total of 30 runners, but close to 70 signed up for this year’s race. The many participants were happy to have completed the 5K, and are already looking forward to next year.
“It’s great, it gets you out and moving in the middle of winter, and it always helps to be with other people,” stated Roxanne Buffone.
The races bring out all different types of people, including 79-year-old Mac Mackenzie who tells us she enjoys the exercise.
“I’m almost 80 and I just want everybody to know being 80 or over is no reason to stop running, all you need is a good pair of shoes,” explained Mackenzie.
Preparations for next year’s run are already in the works, with those with Striders encouraging prospective participants to sign up.
“This is definitely an event that we will run again next year and into the future,” stated Swan-Leuze. “As long as the runners still show up and have interest in it, we will be here ready to help them out.”
It was a great day for both Buffone and Mackenzie, who finished 39th and 14th respectively.