The Melfort Multi-K celebrated their 10th Anniversary on Saturday Sept. 18. The race has become a September tradition in Melfort and brings in people from around the province each year. Race Director Allison Rogers explained that reaching the tenth year was an important milestone.
She added that there are still four or five original committee members still involved.
“We thought we would get a few people and that year was huge and it has just grown every year and just when you think maybe it will lose its lustre it doesn’t people just absolutely love the event, it’s pretty cool to be a part of that in this community,” Rogers said.
“I think we were pretty pumped because 10 is pretty long and a lot of races don’t last that long and continue to grow,” she added.
Rogers said that overall everything ran smoothly even after they adjusted for COVID-19 with a new starting method that was spaced out instead of a mass start.
“The kid’s event was a bit of a gong show as soon as (the starter) said go they all went instead of just taking five at a time so that was of course interesting but it was really good,”
According to Rogers the turnout was great for the event which includes a 1K, 5K, 10K and 21.1K half marathon.
“We had like 424 people were actually there on the day and we had 512 registered, that’s a pretty good ratio in terms of actually on the day we often have quite a few less than that. So I think people were really looking for something to be happening so I think everyone was really glad to be there,” she said.
The event was run virtually in 2020 and the committee referred to it as the 9.5 version, as the ninth annual was in 2019.
“We did the 10th anniversary we didn’t have any warmup formal ceremony beginning to try to keep everybody as socially distanced as possible so that looked different as well but I still think everybody had a really great time we had lots of really good reviews and lots of posting about it on social media. Again I think people just were so happy to have something to look forward to and we were outside so that was really awesome that we could do that so.”
The event brings people from across the country as Rogers explained that one entrant from Edmonton had family from the area.
“So she came home with her mom and they did some visiting with her mom’s family. So there is lots of people that treat it like a homecoming and that’s really cool to see too,” Rogers said.
It has also had developed a family element as children grow from the free 1K run and begin to participate in other runs.
“And the same families are all there together, kids are growing up, they started in the 1K and now they are running the 5,” Rogers said.
“Some of them run the 10 that are not very old, that didn’t seem that long ago they were one of the little dudes trying to get that 1K done. It’s really cool to see the growth and it’s cool for the community support for the event, not just the participants but our sponsors. We have had most of them all 10 years,” Rogers said.
Rogers saluted Castle Northland Building Supply for taking on sponsoring the free 1K for the second consecutive year.
“We are really lucky on all fronts, I feel, to live in an amazing community,” Rogers said.
In terms on the 11 th Annual she explained that the committee will be looking ahead after they sit down and discuss the event.
“We might take a few things that we did this year and take them into next year but we don’t want to change it too much we would like to keep it sort of similar. I imagine next year will be bigger because hopefully we will be out of this cloud of COVID and people will not be too worried about things and kids will be a little bit safer and maybe vaccinated and those sorts of things. We are just going to trudge forward and we are looking forward to it,” Rogers said.
The mandate of the race is to get people active as it was envisioned by Multi-K founder and former Melfort doctor Richard Van Der Ross.
The entire community has embraced the event and Rogers saluted them.
“Thank you to everybody, our volunteers, our sponsors, my committee, they are an amazing group of people that put up with my crazy. It is such a group effort but it’s not possible without all of them,” she said.
Registration for the Melfort Multi-K will open in May, 2022.