Today, the renamed Run the River is one of the most successful road races in north Fulton.
“We had over 1,400 entrants last year. That really in effect is a sell-out for us, because we have to limit participation to 1,500,” said Steve Buck, the race director.
It wasn’t always this way for the 12-year-old event.
“We had 700 to 800 people the first few years, then for some reason it fell back to 500 to 600,” Buck said. “We changed the name to Run the River and then that year we had 1,000 to 1,200 and it’s been climbing ever since.”
Though the name is different, proceeds from the race will be used to continue Roswell-based HomeStretch’s mission of providing housing, hope and life skills to homeless families.
April 20 is the date for the 12th annual Choate Construction Run the River 5K/10K, and with no race day registration, prospective entrants should think about signing up as soon as possible, Buck said.
There are three events. A 5K starts at 7:30 a.m., with the 10K beginning at 8:30 a.m. and the Fun Run at 8:35 a.m. Individual entries are $27 and a family of up to four can register for $80. The Fun Run is $25.
Closing date for registration is April 18.
The races begin at St. Andrew Catholic Church, 675 Riverside Road in Roswell. The flat course is along the Chattahoochee River and is USATF certified.
There will be awards for overall and masters male and female winners as well as in 16 age categories. Fun Run participants also receive trophies.
This is a family, children- and pet-friendly event. Baby strollers are welcome as are walkers. Everyone enjoys a fun-filled post race party of music provided by 97.1 The River, food, prizes and Mee Mee the Clown.
A runner himself, Buck has been involved in the race since its inception and has served as race director for the past six years. He and his wife Rosie always participate.
“The HomeStretch organization has such a great reputation that we have been able to attract really good sponsors over the years, which means we don’t have to bear all the race costs and can earn more money for the nonprofit,” Buck said.
“Run the River is both an event for someone who’s looking to post their personal best time, or someone who just wants to walk or jog for a little exercise. Just come on out and support the cause.”