Runners will once again look to start the race season off with the Coal Country Run.
It’s the fifth year for the race, which originally took runners through the scenic Roche Percee Valley.
But Debby Knight, the race organizer, said that last year, Mother Nature just didn’t want to co-operate.
“We started it at Roche Percee, which is a beautiful place to run,” said Knight.
Because of last year’s flooding, they had to move the race to Bienfait. She said that wasn’t a real problem because the race primarily raises money for the Bienfait arena, so they were still active in the community the race supports. Knight noted that money raised also went to the support the Weldon School Community Council.
Last year the run was moved to a highway by Bienfait, after the flooding forced the move.
Knight said she would like to move it back to the village, but they were unable to do so because the community centre there has been taken down. The building was used to host the participants after the race for refreshments and the post-race festivities.
Knight said they have been canvassing a route for this year, and looked at a road leading to the coal mines.
“It’s a coal country run, so we’d like to go down that road. Hopefully they’ll let us run on that road.”
The race is set for May 12 and will begin at either the Bienfait Legion or the arena, depending on what route they run. Knight said they don’t want people to have to cross the highway, so the race will be either entirely north or south of Highway 39.
Last week there were 65 registrants signed up for the race, which includes a 10k, 5k and mini mile for the youngsters. Knight assured that all racers will know where to go before race day.
She said it is a particularly good day for the children running the mini mile. There are prizes for the children who raise the most in pledges, and they benefit from the money raised as they take advantage of the rink.
Knight said the run provides an opprtunity to see people who come in just for the race, noting there is a man who attends every year from St. Albert, Alta.
“He’s an old faithful,” she added.
She noted that the race is timed, but isn’t “chip time.” There are four people with stopwatches at the finish line.
The event is supported by volunteers, and Knight said they are always looking for more.
In the end, she said it’s a great morning out for a family to be active.
“It’s a good Saturday morning of family fun.”