CityRun a Great Collaboration for 26 Years
Contributing editorial commentary below and photos courtesy of Amy Bamforth.
On Sunday, April 1 over 1,300 runners and walkers gathered on this sunny, brisk day for the 26th annual CityRun. The 5 mile road race and 3 mile walk was a collaboration between several City departments, Marathon Sports, the Cambridge Public Schools Athletic Department, Saucony and FOCA (Friends of Cambridge Athletics, the booster club at the high school). Proceed from the event support athletic teams at Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School (CRLS) and the Andrea Harvey Memorial fund, which provides scholarships to graduating seniors and offers domestic violence awareness and girl empowerment training.
“I think CityRun provides a great opportunity for our students to raise funds for their teams and to benefit from the support of the community,” said Maryann Cappello, Director of Athletics at CRLS. “We are very fortunate because this event brings in over $10,000 to the FOCA. Many of our students also run and win awards. A lot of others walk with their teams and it is a wonderful bonding experience.”
Other community partners included Whole Foods, who supplied water and snacks for athletes once they crossed the finish line, and Harvard on the Move, a group that sponsors weekly runs and walks that are open to all in Cambridge and offer a chance to forge connections with people from diverse parts of the community. City employees from a number of departments participated as runners and volunteers, and several 8th grade students from Graham parks earned community service hours by helping organizers with the many details involved. A large contingent of walkers participated in honor of Andrea Harvey, a beloved Cambridge resident and teacher in East Boston, who was murdered in a domestic violence incident. Money raised for the memorial fund supports professional development for teachers to increase their understanding of relationship violence and support girl empowerment so that they can address these issues with students in Cambridge Public Schools and East Boston, where Harvey taught.
FOCA volunteers, many of whom are parents of CRLS athletes, helped register participants and distribute numbers and tee-shirts. Cambridge Auxiliary Police helped with traffic control as the crowd moved through the course.
Mayor Henrietta Davis held the “pistol for peace” as CityRun event coordinator Paul Ryder, Director of Recreation for the City’s Dept. of Human Services, counted down to the start for the runners.
Once the race started, organizers rushed to set up the finish line in preparation for the first runners to arrive. Ryan Neely of Somerville was the first male finisher, and Kristin Martin of Dracut was the first female to cross. CRLS runners earned trophies in both youth divisions. The girls swept theirs, with senior Emma Payne in first, sophomore Ariela Schear in second and sophomore Noa Randall taking 3rd place. In the boys division, sophomore Michael Scarlett took first place and freshman Logan Chen earned 3rd.
Special thanks to the following corporate and community organizations whose support contributed to the success of the 2012 City Run/City Walk:
C.S. Draper Laboratories
Whole Foods Markets
Well Bridge Athletic Club-Harvard Square
Cambridge Trust Company
FC Facilitation/Forest City
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Middlesex District Attorney Gerry Leone
Harvard University Credit Union
East Cambridge Saving Bank
Hildebrand Family Center
Thomas Coughlin Insurance
Cambridge Family YMCA
Laborer's International Union