The city’s annual July Fourth 5-kilometer and 10-kilometer run and walk have become a city tradition and community asset, a recreation official told the City Council this week.
In a report to the council Tuesday, community services supervisor Janet Cates said the 17th running of the races last month drew a field of about 1,000--slightly larger than the previous year. She said the event generally breaks even, but its value to the city transcends dollars and cents.
“It’s a tradition, and a lot of community pride is wrapped up in this event,” Cates said. “Even though it means closing some streets, we’ve never had any complaints. Everything about the race, including the Kiwanis Club pancake breakfast, is a gathering point for the community.”
In her report, Cates noted that the July Fourth races started as a fund-raiser for a local high school youth who had lost his legs in an accident. Since then the city has continued the race mainly as a community celebration, she said.