Hundreds of runners and volunteers came together at Ivy Tech's Valparaiso Campus on Sunday, October 25th to participate in the 6th annual Valparaiso Half-Marathon, which is organized by the United Way of Porter County. It was a perfect day for this event, with cloudless skies, calm winds, and warm, autumn weather.
This half-marathon was not only a race in which all runners were welcome, but it also served as an excellent fundraiser for the United Way of Porter County. Mackenna Schon, the Director for Volunteer Engagement at UWPC says that this event greatly benefits the young leaders of Porter County.
“The race is the biggest fundraiser for the Power of Youth Council. Our goal is to promote youth self-esteem, so all the funds today are going to be going towards youth self-esteem programs in Porter County. We actually do a student-run grant allocation in which the students decide what programs are going to be funded, and it’s a really great experience for them.”
Jenna Giorgi, a senior at Wheeler High School, says, “This is one of my favorite days as a Power of Youth member. We work really hard up until the day and it’s fun seeing all of our hard work pay off and at the same time knowing that we’re doing great things for youth in our
The race, which was in the hands of dozens of hard-working volunteers and students, was a lot of fun. The county course was flat and resulted in PR’s (personal records) for many runners. Christian Hyde, from Kokomo, Indiana, got 2nd place in the race ran his best half-marathon time, completing it in just under 80 minutes. “It was a good race. I couldn’t have asked for better weather. I’m running the Indianapolis Monumental Marathon in two weeks, and this was a great way to prepare for that!”
Once the runners completed the race, they were welcome to join the after party to dance and eat food to their heart’s delight. Don Quijote, Valpo Velvet, County Line Orchard, Pesto’s, Starbucks, Third Coast Spice Cafe and the Blue Chip Casino served a variety of post-race foods & drinks. Select Physical Therapy was even available for those with aching muscles. Awards were presented to the top three runners in their age divisions, as well as overall winners.
The Valparaiso Half Marathon was the race to be at for not only recreational & competitive runners, but for their supporters, too. The Power of Youth Council had a great success in the event, and they want to say thank you to everyone who came out and supported them. We can’t wait for next year!