June 25, 2013

ROAD RACE NOTEBOOK: Augusta race has added meaning for Ackerman

By Matt DiFilippo mdifilippo@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

The second annual "Shake, Rattle, & Run 5K" race will begin at 9 a.m., Sunday at Capital Park in Augusta. Its cause is a personal one for race organizer Anna Ackerman.

Ackerman, a Cony High School and Bowdoin College graduate, is donating all proceeds from the road race to the Maine Parkinson's Society. Her father, Francis, was diagnosed with Parkinson's 13 years ago at age 49.

"I'm really hoping to raise over $1,000 this year," Ackerman said. "We raised $1,000 last year, so being able to beat that would be great."

This year's 5-kilometer race is actually a relay race covering 10 kilometers. People can register individually or as a team of two. Everyone who registers as an individual will be paired up with another runner.

"If there's an odd number, I'll just run it, too," Ackerman said.

Ackerman completed her first Boston Marathon two months ago. She said the tragedy during that event has not lessened her enthusiasm for running.

"Oh, absolutely not," she said. "It's only fired me up more."

According to Ackerman, there will be 10 volunteers helping during this year's race. She has a little better idea this time about what goes into organizing a race.

"It's a lot of details that you don't really think about -- like how much spray paint you need to show arrows on the course," she said. "I think last year was a good test run."

Last year's proceeds went to the Michael J. Fox Foundation. Ackerman said she wanted to give money to a local organization this year. Francis is one of about 7,000 people in Maine battling Parkinson's disease.

"He's doing OK," Ackerman said. "Definitely, this year has been much more of a struggle. It's not every day that he's able to go out and do something active. That's a big change from last year."

The cost to enter is $10 for individuals and $20 for teams or two. To register, go to the race website at http://shakerattlerunrelay.weebly.com. If you have any questions, call Anna Ackerman at 446-1989.

• • •

One thing race directors, runners, and fans don't count on at a half marathon is an exciting finish. But that's what happened Sunday at the Kennebec River Rail Trail Half Marathon.

"Seth Hasty was actually the winner last year," race director Sarah Dunckel said. "When we saw people coming in, we thought it was Seth in the lead."

Hasty, 33, was in the lead, but 41-year-old Robert Wolfe was right with him. Wolfe passed Hasty with about 20 yards to go and came home the winner. The race results credit both Wolfe and Hasty with a time of 1 hour, 19 minutes, 5 seconds, but Wolfe's chip time was 1:19:04.

"Everybody was cheering and screaming," Dunckel said. "It was a great race to watch no matter who finished first. It was really cool to watch it."

Dunckel said over 200 people registered for the half marathon, with 167 finishing. There were 175 finishers last year.

"We had quite a few people register that didn't show up," Dunckel said. "I think it was because of the rain."

• • •

The Town of Fairfield has many events planned for this weekend to celebrate the 225th anniversary of the incorporation of Fairfield. One of the first events Saturday is a 5K road race that begins at 7:30 a.m. at the Community Center.

The route for the Fairfield Days 5K Run/Walk goes through the town and past Lawrence High School before ending back at the Community Center.

"I'm hoping to race around 30 to 50 people," race director Lauren Downie said. "We're hoping to have a nice, little, small race, family-oriented. I have a couple families signed up that are racing together."

The race also has one of the most unusual features seen recently in local road races: At each kilometer, there will be a wrestler encouraging people to do a challenge, such as carrying sandbags, pushing tires, or doing a minute straight of push-ups.

Fees are $10 for individuals or $20 for families of three. To register, go to http://www.platesforlife.com.

Matt DiFilippo -- 861-9243


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