Site last updated: Monday, March 27, 2023

Log In

Reset Password
Butler County's great daily newspaper

Reviewing her racing memories

Everyone knows that in running, as in life, you can’t go back. I realize that as I review last year’s log of successes and failures, hard training and skipped workouts, new races tried and old ones revisited.

Although it’s fun to reach out to new events, even the old favorites are never the same from year to year. Going back to events is like catching up on old friends.

Cherry Blossom 10 Mile and 5k: A few friends and I were fortunate to win the entry lottery for this April’s Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run and 5k Run/Walk in Washington, D.C. The race has been held on the first Sunday of April since 1973 to coincide with the bloom of the famous DC cherry trees.

When my friends and I ran the event in 2015, an unusually early spring meant that most of the blossoms were done by race day, so I’m excited to run through the fragrant pink blossoms this time. I can’t exactly stop to smell the flowers since there’s a 2-hour, 20-minute cutoff time for the 10 miles. I’ve also promised myself not to stop to swig that few ounces of beer in the last mile of the race.

Dirty Kiln Trail Races: I first ran the Dirty Kiln in 2015. Fairly new to trail racing, I enjoyed the challenge of the course complete with hill climbs, mud and creek crossings on the chilly but scenic half marathon course.

When I thought I would be swept away in a particularly deep and strong current, strong helping hands guided me through the rushing water. Dave got up close and personal with a rocky stream bed on the 5k and our group had plenty of stories to share over post-race beers.

A few years later, I returned to a different sort of adventure there, slogging through the mud of an unusually warm April. I earned one of the race’s unique handmade awards and a picnic lunch in the park.

This year, Dirty Kiln returns to Canoe Creek State Park for its 11th running on April 8. The event will be, as race timer Herb Cratty stated, “Turn Around, Bright Eyes,” with the course run in reverse. It’s an opportunity for a new look and a new adventure.

Glacier Ridge Ultramarathon and Trail Races: In my years of road racing, spring was consumed by marathon training. But years of running on the roads seemed to wear on my body and mind. I registered for the 2019 Glacier Ridge 30k Trail Run/Hike, but was forced to defer my registration due to injury. Then COVID shut down the 2020 race.

I finally completed Glacier Ridge 30k in 2021 and it was worth the wait. The event is friendly and low key with good support by volunteers and other participants.

Glacier Ridge 30k is staged from Moraine State Park and follows Glacier Ridge and North Country Trails on a hilly but scenic out-and-back. My first Glacier Ridge was warm and dry, but last year made up for it as we slipped and slid through ankle-deep mud and rushing water.

Registration is now open for the 11th running of the Glacier Ridge Ultramarathon and Trail Races on May 13, which includes 50k and 50 Mile distances and a 5-person 50-Mile Relay along with the now 20-mile beginners’ run/hike. The courses have been changed slightly this year for safety concerns.

Pittsburgh Marathon 5k. A few months ago, I received a letter from P3R’s Tom Heisey informing me of my mom’s single-age record for the UPMC Health Plan Pittsburgh Marathon 5k. In 2015 at age 86, Mom had run 40:49, a record that Tom speculated would last for many years.

I still miss my mom and those golden years of running together. I hope I’m still on my feet at age 86, but until then I have quite a few years to chase a single-age record of my own. The age 70 might just be within reach.

Buffalo Creek Half Marathon: This year’s 18th Buffalo Creek Half Marathon date has been announced as Oct. 21. I plan to be there as I have been for the past 17.

Upcoming Events

Saturday, 10 a.m.: Groundhog Day 4 Mile, Punxsutawney, Run to Gobbler’s Knob and back. Collector coins to all finishers. 814-938-6362 or

Feb. 4, 9 a.m.: Groundhog Day 5k, Allison Park. Starts at North Park Boathouse.

Feb. 4, 9 a.m.: Groundhog Day 5k, Painesville, OH. Run at Lake County Fairgrounds.

Feb. 5, 9 a.m.: Groundhog Prediction Race, Zelienople. Choice of 6.66, 3.33, 1.11 miles or run all three. No watches or timing devices allowed. Also costume contest, music, food and fun.

Feb. 11, 10 a.m.: Cupid’s Chase 5k, Butler. Run at Lake Arthur Golf Club. 724-613-8133 or

Feb. 11, 10 a.m.: Community Options Cupid’s Chase, Pittsburgh.

Feb. 12, 10 a.m.: Valentine Prediction Race, Erie. Time prediction run of between 4 and 6 miles with chocolate awards.

Feb. 18, 9 a.m.: Epicenter Eight(.5), Fredonia. Race #1 of MCTA 26.2 Series starts at Fredonia Presbyterian Church. 724-301-6775 or

Feb. 25, 10 a.m.: The Spring Thaw 5, 10, 15 or 20 Miles, Allison Park. Run loops around North Park Lake.

Feb. 25, 7:30 a.m.: Olde Girdled Grit Trail Run Marathon, Concord Township, Ohio. Scenic run through 2 parks. Half marathon starts at 9 A.M.

Feb.25, 4 p.m.: Big One Run Mile Race, New Castle. Fast, point-to-point course in Cascade Park.

March 4, 9 a.m.: Shamrock Run 5k, Cranberry Township. Run at Graham Park.

March 4, 9 a.m.: South Park Half Marathon, South Park.

March 4, 11 a.m.: Ellport Boro Community 5k, Ellport. Scenic 5k with post-race pizza.

March 11, 9 a.m.: St. Patrick’s Distance Festival, Erie. Run 5k, 10k or bothe. Starts at Presque Isle State Park’s Rotary Pavilion.

March 18, 10 a.m.: Trout Island Tromp 4.6 Miles, Sharpsville. Run on Trout Island Rail Trail, Race 2 in MCTA 26.2 Series. 724-301-6775 or

March 18, 10 a.m.: Shamrock Shuffle 5k and 1 Mile Fun Walk, Leechburg. Costumes encouraged, dog friendly. Also Small Town, Loud Voice Dance Party at 6 P.M.

March 25, 7:30 a.m.: Shamrock Shuffle Half Marathon, 5k and 1 Mile Run/Walk, Harmony. Challenging, hilly course. 5k starts at 10 A.M., 1 Mile at 11 A.M.

March 25, 10 a.m.: Kiski Area Shamrock Run 5k, Apollo. Out and back from Kunkle Park.

May 6 & 7: Pittsburgh Marathon Weekend. Registration is open for marathon, half marathon, relay, 5k, kids’ and toddlers’ runs, pet walk.

Race Results

Operation Troop Appreciation 5k, Nov. 6: Colton Ginsburg, 1st Overall M, 18:38; Miri Shaw, 1st Overall W, 22:03; Teresa Grimm, 3rd Overall W, 22:57; Stacey Sahr-Herman, 1st Masters W, 24:55; Joe Molinaro, 1st 55-59 M, 23:15; Tom Halaseak, 1st 40-44 M, 23:38; Matt Dudkowski, 1st 45-49 M, 24:02; Catie Parker, 1st 11-14 W, 25:37; Andrew Parker, 2nd 50-54 M, 25:38; Tony Chan, 1st 60-64 M, 25:40; Rebecca Parker, 1st 45-49 W, 25:45; Mitch Radella, 2nd 55-59 M, 27:36; Joe Denninger, 3rd 60-64 M, 30:51; Rhonda Maloney, 3rd 55-59 W, 33:35; Joni Clemente, 1st 60-64 W, 38:17; Ann Denninger, 2nd 60-64 W, 43:49; Debra Kuminkoski, 3rd 60-64 W, 46:03 Christine Patton, 1st 50-54 W, 47:00; Eion McKernan, 22:00; Owen McKernan, 24:01; Carter Anderson, 24:58; Brendan Menz, 25:50; Owen Anderson, 26:22; James Parker, 26:40; Ryan Maher, 26:42; Sean Menz, 27:43; Kyle Stephans, 31:28; Alexa Risdon, 32:36; Brendan Huang, 34:59; Kelly McGivern, 37:25; Lawrence Wilson, 39:08; Connor Bauer, 40:20; Maria Monahan, 46:40; Judy Fritsch, 51:43; Molly Crawford-Barnhart, 1:00:44

The Rewarding 5k, Nov. 13: Owen Bluman, 1st Overall M, 17:10; Catherine Hrach, 1st Overall W, 24:47; Mitch Radella, 26:02; Ethan Hrach, 28:14; John Karpac, 29:36; Andrew Parish, 30:54; Madison Clifton, 31:22; Elizabeth Dickey, 32:12; Rachel Cunningham, 36:36; Rocco Dangelo, 36:41; Cathy Martin, 40:12; Cody Ward, 51:51; Terry Gwinn, 56:25; Janice McGlone, 56:25; Dennis McGlone, 56:26; Trisha Seto, 58:20; Karen Gwinn, 1:01:07

Foxburg Turkey Trot 5k, Nov. 19: Jonathan Hansford, 1st Overall M, 19:07; Aleya Linamen, 1st Overall W, 24:41; Josiah Hansford, 1st 16-19 M, 19:20; S.M.Courtney, 1st 60-69 M, 22:43; Barb Corle, 1st 50-59 W, 26:32; Grady Snyder, 2nd 15 & Under M, 36:59; Andy Witcomb, 2nd 50-59 M, 37:30; Melanie Evertts, 1st 40-49 W, 41:06; Tifani Snyder, 2nd 40-49 W, 54:34; Valerie Snyder, 3rd 40-49 W, 55:36; Larry Keefer, 2nd 70+ M, 1:01:00; Polly Keefer, 1st 70+ W, 1:01:02; Karen Defibaugh, 1st 60-69 W, 1:03:17; Mikael Bulisco, 54:24; Shannon Whitcomb, 1:01:03

Gobbler’s Gallop, Nov. 24: Troy Reinsel, 1st Overall M, 37:20; Jodi Patterson, 1st Overall W, 41:58; Julie Patterson, 2nd Overall W, 42:06; Jonathan McElwain, 1st 30-39 M, 42:34; Mark Casteel, 1st 50-59 M, 43:40; Justin Zackal, 3rd 40-49 Mm, 44:48; Carrie Birckbichler-Smith, 2nd 40-49 W, 48:48; Rebecca Smith, 3rd 20-29 W, 50:39; Zach Porter, 2nd 30-39 M, 51:52; John Armstrong, 3rd 50-59 M, 52:10; Pamela Zackal, 1st 30-39 W, 52:20; Jack Patterson, 2nd 60-64 M, 52:39; Anthony Colangelo, 3rd 30-39 M, 56:30; Sarah Antal, 2nd 50-59 W, 1:00:41; Kylie Nemcek, 3rd 14-19 W, 1:05:16; Daniel Spiker, 45:29; Joseph Rubcic, 45:59; Devin Limerick, 46:26; Nathan Brown, 46:28; Scott Baker, 54:21; Sharon Smilek, 54:55; Kristi Colangelo, 56:30; Jeremiah Friday, 1:00:41; Joella Baker, 1:02:28; Esmeralda Hendricks, 1:03:19; Sara Porter, 1:03:19; John Grenci, 1:13:25; Mark Pekich, 1:23:28; Michelle Pekich, 1:23:28

Pittsburgh Turkey Trot 5 Mile, Nov. 25: Eli Anish, 1st Overall M, 26:04; Nicole Hilton, 1st Overall W, 29:47; Sarah McGowan, 3rd Overall W, 33:14; Nick Hall, 1st 20-24 M, 29:32; Jessi Drayer, 1st 30-34 W, 36:59; Lucas Pott, 2nd 10 & Under M, 50:04; Matt Sudak, 32:28; Anthony Miller, 33:30; Brian McGowan, 33:57; Dustin Kalkbrenner, 36:41; Robert Pudlo, 36:47; Bill Snider, 37:38; Jeffrey Behr, 40:09; Derek Howell, 41:33; Chris Smith, 42:50; G. Mike Kehoe, 43:15; Kateryna Bittner, 44:53; Luke Anderson, 44:55; Jocelyn Behr, 45:11; Seth Stallard, 45:21; Darren Klaum, 45:56; Wendy Wick, 46:14; Matthew Ankrom, 48:05; Daniel Loeffler, 48:15; Greg Zetwo, 49:08; Amanda Zetwo, 49:10; Jeremy Pott, 50:07; Nadia Elkettani, 50:17; Laila Elkettani, 50:28; Becky Ellsworth, 53:53; Drew Sherba, 53:38; Terry Melis, 54:16; Jeanne-Marie Walker, 54:34; Raegan Walker, 54:34; Breanna Rice, 54:53; Courtney Stover, 54:55; David Blackwell, 55:17; Nancy Thenthongkham, 55:51; Marnie Smith, 59:23; Antonietta Riley, 1:03:25; Gina Schiffer, 1:03:26; Chrissy Smith, 1:09:39; Ryan Fullerton, 1:12:39

Send comments and suggestions: Patricia Neubert. Phone 724-352-4395. Email

Pat Neubert is a running columnist for the Butler Eagle

Subscribe to our Daily Newsletter

* indicates required