FOX 50’s Gayle Hardy (r to l) & FOX 50’s Sylvia Lanier participate in the Ramblin’ Rose on Sunday, Oct 16th.
Several CBC’ers participated in the Ramblin’ Rose Women’s Half Marathon Inaugural Run on Sunday, October 16, 2011. The run started bright and early from the Durham Bulls Athletic Park & American Tobacco at 7:30am. FOX 50 Administrative Assistant Sheila Chast ran her first half-marathon at the event. She put together a great capcom story about the race:
A First Time Half-Marthoner Account of the Ramblin’ Rose
There was a chill in the morning air. The sun wasn’t quite up in the sky. The anxious runners lined up according to their expected pace. You could feel the excitement in the air. It was quiet, but the ‘Start’ area in front of the Durham Bulls main entrance on Blackwell Street was filled with energy.
To get the runners pumped for their 13.1 mile race, there were some upbeat comments made by announcers on a loud speaker followed by the National Anthem, and then the excitement began! The gun went off and the race was on! Over 1900 runners headed into Downtown Durham, which was closed to traffic just for this special event, the Ramblin’ Rose Half Marathon.
The race went from the downtown area onto and around the Duke University Campus. Then, the route took runners into several established Durham neighborhoods, back down to Blackwell Street, across the finish line back at American Tobacco where there were 6000+ spectators waiting for their loved ones to cross that finish line. Even Mayor Bill Bell was high-fiving the runners as they approached the finish.
The Ramblin’ Rose Women’s Half Marathon Inaugural Run is being touted as the largest running event Downtown Durham has ever seen. In fact, it is the first and only women’s half marathon in the Carolinas. Come to find out, this was one of the top ten largest women’s half marathon events in the country.
The event was beautifully done – well-organized. There were 275 volunteers positioned throughout the race course cheering runners on, urging them to keep up the good work. There were also 130 police officers stationed around the course. Many runners thanked the volunteers and officers as they ran by.
The ages of the runners ranged from 12 years old to one woman who was just 11 days shy of her 80th birthday. Some runners were from out of state; 27 states were represented, including California.
The first part of the race was very pleasant. No hills and pretty scenery. The restored Downtown Durham homes on the tree-lined streets had lovely gardens out front. The Duke campus was stately.
Then, the second half of the race was a bit more challenging, but the scenery was great – large homes with beautifully manicured lawns. At this point, runners’ stamina was tested. The hills were very steep. And there were many of them! The volunteers all said, ‘no more hills after this one’…but they were wrong!
Each hill seemed tougher than the one before. But, so many runners pushed through. They fed off the cheering from the volunteers and spectators and forced their way up the hills, feeling the reward of the downhill rest.
Runners who signed up early for the race got their names printed on their bibs. So, those of us who had names on our bibs heard people urging us to keep up the good work…calling us by name!
Each mile of the race was well-marked with big signs. When the mile sign for 11 came up, someone yelled, “Just two more, ladies! We can do it!” The group of runners who heard that cheered and ran with smiles on their faces, knowing they were almost done and had a lot to be proud of.
Once runners came down the last hill and turned onto Blackwell Street, they could hear the band playing and the crowd cheering. That helped runners push it…they could see the finish line! Push it! Push it! They crossed and finished!!! They were hugged by their friends and family. They grabbed a sport bottle full of cold water. They were given a medal! They did it! They caught their breath and felt a huge sense of satisfaction, success, and pride!
CBC runners included FOX 50 Non-Traditional Revenue Manager Sylvia Lanier who helped organize “Team Best I Have” with Marion Youngblood. FOX 50 Art Director 1 Gayle Hardy, FOX 50 Sales Assistant Cindy Hoegg, and FOX 50 VP & GM Tommy Schenck ran together in a relay. WRAL-TV Anchor/Reporter Kelcey Carlson was the number two top female! FOX 50 Administrative Assistant Sheila Chast says this is the first of many half-marathons for her. Also, FOX 50 Director of Local & New Media Sales Niel Sollod’s wife, Jennifer, ran in the race.
Thanks to FOX 50’s Sheila Chast for this capcom story & for some of these capcom photos. Thakns also to ATC’s Valerie Ward for capcom photos.