5k Chili Run to change starting point

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The annual 5k Chili Run and Chili Fun Run will feature a new starting point and a different route to improve safety and become better identified with the other events of the day. Both events will begin at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 26 at Willis Insurance, 100 W. 7th St. on the square in Cassville.

"This year we're starting right on the square trying to incorporate it more with the Chili Cook-Off," said Dove Haney, center director of the Cassville YMCA.

This is the third year that Haney has been involved with this event and she said the new route will significantly decrease the number of traffic lane crossings. The route will begin at the square, proceed to the baseball field and then continue along the city's greenway.

"It'll be a beautiful run," said Haney. "We have some wonderful little trophies that are custom made for our event."

The custom-made trophies feature an outhouse and will be awarded to the top three male and female finishers in seven different age divisions. Haney is encouraging interested individuals to sign up early to take advance of the pre-registration discount.

"We do have some registrations," said Haney, "but we'd like them to pre-register -- it's less expensive."

Cost of the event is $15 for those who pre-register and $20 for those who sign up on the day of the event. The YMCA is currently offering a "Couch to 5k" training program for those who have never attempted to run a 5k, or for runners wanting to get back in shape.

The cost for this program is $15, and race registration is included as a free benefit. The class meets three times a week and Rick Ragsdale, youth and sports director teaches it. Participants don't have to be a member of the YMCA to enroll in this program.

The one-mile fun run will also begin at the same time, and it is offered for those who don't want to accept the challenge of a 5k event. This event is offered at no cost, but pre-registration is required.

Mindy Artherton, director of the Cassville Area Chamber of Commerce, appreciates the importance of having the YMCA's 5k Chili Run part of the Saturday Fall Festival events.

"We value the partnership with the YMCA and believe it is great for the entire community to have both the chili cook-off and the chili run on the same day," said Artherton. "Our goal for the Fall Festival is to make sure that Cassville is buzzing with activity and out-of-town guests. The 5k Chili Run gives people another reason to come to Cassville."

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