VALLEY RUNNING CLUB DISAPPOINTED RACE WAS CANCELED

by Christian Mower on November 2, 2011

THE PRESIDENT OF THE WHITE MOUNTAIN MILERS SAYS HE’S DISAPPOINTED SUNDAY MORNING’S HALF MARATHON HAD TO BE CANCELED BUT HE WANTS TO GET THE MESSAGE OUT TO RUNNERS HIS NON-PROFIT CLUB CARES ABOUT THEM – AND WANTS THEM TO COME BACK NEXT YEAR TO RACE.

PAUL KIRSCH SAYS CONWAY POLICE NOTIFIED THE MILERS AROUND 5 A.M. SUNDAY ITS RACE PERMIT WAS BEING PULLED BECAUSE THE SNOWSTORM HAD MADE THE RACE COURSE ROADS UNSAFE.

KIRSCH SAYS HE WANTS PEOPLE TO KNOW THE POLICE MADE THE CALL THEY BELIEVED WAS RIGHT AND HIS CLUB SUPPORTS THAT.

CONWAY POLICE LT. CHRIS PERLEY SAYS THE ROADS WERE A MESS AT 5 A.M. SUNDAY – THE PLOWS WERE JUST COMING OUT – AND RUNNERS AND THE TRAVELING PUBLIC WOULD HAVE BEEN AT RISK WITH SNOW BEING PILED UP ON THE SHOULDERS OF THE ROADS PLANNED FOR THE RACE.

WALKERS WERE SCHEDULED TO START THE RACE AT 8:30 A.M., FOLLOWED BY THE RUNNERS AT 9:30 A.M., WITH THE COURSE BEGINNING NEAR THE EASTERN SLOPE INN IN NORTH CONWAY, PROCEEDING OVER TO WEST SIDE ROAD AND DOWN IT TO A LOOP, THEN BACK TO THE INN VIA WEST SIDE ROAD AND RIVER ROAD.

KIRSCH SAYS NO ONE CAN CONTROL THE WEATHER AND IT WAS THE FIRST TIME IN THE HISTORY OF HIS DECADES-OLD CLUB AN EVENT WAS CANCELED. HE SAYS AS SOON AS HE FOUND OUT FROM POLICE THE RACE WAS OFF THE CLUB MADE EVERY ATTEMPT TO NOTIFY THOSE INVOLVED, INCLUDING PARTICIPANTS AND VOLUNTEERS, BY PHONE, EMAIL, FACEBOOK AND THE CLUB’S WEBSITE.

KIRSCH SAYS ABOUT 450 PEOPLE HAD REGISTERED FOR THE MAJOR FUNDRAISER AND ABOUT 150 SHOWED UP AT RACE TIME, ONLY TO LEARN THEN IT HAD BEEN CANCELED.

KIRSCH SAYS THE CANCELLATION IS A DISAPPOINTMENT TO HIS CLUB MEMBERS AS WELL AS ALL THE RACE REGISTRANTS AS THE RACE USUALLY ALLOWS THE CLUB TO PROVIDE AS MUCH AS $7,000 A YEAR IN SCHOLARSHIPS TO WORTHY STUDENT ATHLETES.

KIRSCH SAYS ANYONE WHO REGISTERED THIS YEAR WILL BE OFFERED A CREDIT TOWARD NEXT YEAR’S RACE. AND HE SAYS ONE LESSON LEARNED FOR NEXT YEAR IS THE CLUB WILL ESTABLISH A FIRM TIME BEFORE THE RACE FOR PEOPLE TO FIND OUT ITS STATUS.

FOR THE LATEST STATUS UPDATES ON THE RACE, SEE THE WEBSITE AT www.whitemountainmilers.com.