Madison in May set for Saturday
By Greg Sullivan
The Madison in May 5K/12K road race presented by the Madison Lions Club will get underway this Saturday morning.
Registration is still available for anyone interested in getting in on the action. The late registration fee is $20.
The race event has been going on, under various names and affiliations, for some time now in Madison. Race organizer Dorothy Newton said that the event has been affiliated with the Madison Lions Club and Christian organization Young Life of Morgan County for the past six years.
"This race has been going on for a long time, it's just sort of changed hands," Newton said. "This race all goes towards Young Life of Morgan County."
Young Life is an organization that brings Christian role models (usually college age) to spend time with younger students.
"It's playful, organized chaos with a message," Newton said of the Young Life experience for students.
On the racing end of things, this will be the first year the group has put on a 12K. Last year, according to Newton, the addition of a 10K race brought with it a very positive response. This year the group hopes that extending the race to a 12K will attract more runners. The logic is, races over 10K attract runners who compete in Run & See Georgia. Such races give Run & See competitors double points in their season competition. There is also the possibility that some 12K runners will compete in the 12K and the 5K in the same day to earn triple points in their competition.
Saturday Madison in May will have a 5K, a 12K and a 1-mile race. The 1-mile race is expected to appeal to children, the 5K will likely attract walkers, parents with strollers and high schoolers, Newton said. The hope for the 12K is that it will attract serious runners.
Last year the event drew 290 runners, but this year, according to Dorothy's husband and race co-director Dan Newton, the goal is to have 400 participants.
"We've increased every year by about 30 percent," Dan said of race participation.
This year, organizers are urging local school sports teams to sign-up and participate against other teams of kids.
Runners Saturday will be provided with goodie bags and mugs will be given out to age group first, second and third place winners. Those who place in the overall races will receive plaques.
Aside from the race, a raffle will also be held for the framed, original artwork of the race t-shirt design. Race-related art is currently on display at Perk Avenue downtown.
Organizers also want area residents to be aware that there could be traffic delays Saturday morning in the area between Madison and Rutledge due to race activities. The race will begin near the African-American Museum in Madison and will work its way over to Dixie Hwy.