There are several reasons why participants continue to partake in the annual Riverwalk 5K, scheduled for October 3, from the timing of the event within the ‘Beaches to Woodlands’ tour to the historical scenery along the course in downtown Milton. However, enthusiasts also have the opportunity to walk away with $250.
Two of the $250 prizes are for the male and female runners to break the current course record. While Susan Smith set the woman’s record with a finishing time of 20:12 in 2013, Nate Crum had a record finish at 15:46 in 2011.
In addition each participant, regardless of how or when they finish the course, will also have a chance to win $250 through a random bib number. The holder of the selected bib number must be present in order to win.
“I think this is something else that attracts a lot people to the race,” said Kyle Kemp, the 5K director. “We try to give everyone a chance at winning that cash prize.”
Runners will also be able to win medals for top placing finishes at the event, Kemp said.
Although the 5K event offers a scenic route, Facilities Director Bill Gamblin said the course also offers a challenge to avid runners.
“There is a couple of sneaky spots on the course,” Gamblin said.
In addition to running on different surfaces, Gamblin added there are a couple of inclines which could prove challenging to runners, like Pine Street.
“You are looking at it and it doesn’t look like it is up hill, but it is a gradual enough grade that you feel it going up,” he said.
Whether participants run or walk along the course, they will also be supporting the city’s parks department.
“The monies raised from this event helps us fund our youth programs, like football, basketball (and) baseball,” Gamblin said. “It is because of events like this, that helps us offset some of those costs and keep (the programs) in the affordable range for everybody.”
Proceeds will also help the Parks Department with ‘Bands on the Blackwater’ and expanding senior activities at the Guy Thompson Community Center, organizers said.
Registration fees are $25 with an event t-shirt and $20 without a t-shirt. Registration will also take place prior to the event at the Riverwalk pavilion on South Willing Street.
Race packet pickups are scheduled for the following locations and dates, according to a press release from the Parks Department.
Monday, Sept. 28 at Academy Sports and Outdoors on Davis Highway in Pensacola’s University Shops from 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 29 at the Guy Thompson Community Center, 5629 Byrom St., in Milton from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 1 at the Guy Thompson Community Center, 5629 Byrom St., in Milton from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 3 at the Riverwalk South Pavilion on South Willing St. from 4 to 4:45 p.m.