Catasauqua Press

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Running Ramblings Valley running races growing

Thursday, July 16, 2015 by JEFF MOELLER Special to the Press in Sports

Like they have in recent years across the country, running races have found a home in the Lehigh Valley.

"It is definitely one of the hot things going on right now," said Rochelle Romeo, managing director of Run Lehigh Valley. "There have been more and more events popping up lately.

"More running events have been coming to the Lehigh Valley. It really seems to be growing quickly."

Romeo helped developed Run Lehigh Valley, a group that began in 2010 that seeks to secure and organize running events. Currently, the group has been developing 5K (3.1 miles) as well as five-and seven mile races.

Her interest in the sport began in her hometown of Berwick, where the Run for the Diamonds nine-mile race is one of the oldest in the country that began in 1908.

"Growing up and seeing that race sparked an interest," said Romeo, who describes herself as an occasional runner. "That was part of the reason why I started this. The race always had a big impact on me. "

Romeo stated the primary demographic of runners in Lehigh Valley races are in the range from the mid-20s to the mid-50s. However, she has seen more women than men involved in races.

She noted how the Mud and Trail races have been gaining momentum and will attract a different crowd. Also, Dorney Park's recent addition of half and full marathon have bolstered the area's Via and St. Luke's Half and Full Marathons and the Runner's World Half Marathon.

"It will depend on the race," said Romeo. "But typically we see runners in that age bracket. The type of race can dictate some different results."

Run Lehigh Valley had a 7-mile race scheduled for the Lehigh Valley Parkway July 11 and also a Musikfest 4-miler that will begin in Allentown and end in Bethlehem on August 9 as its upcoming events.

They are also in negotiations with Dorney Park with their running series and also soon hope to unveil a 10-mile race in mid-September.

The group held the Rosie the Riveter 5K in Bethlehem July 5.

"We see more racing happening in the future," added Romeo. "We're looking to have longer races because the interest is there."

For more information, check the website, www.runlehighvalley.com

In the Rosie the Riveter 5k, Kevin Waterman of Emmaus was the overall finisher in a time of 16:50. Will Alpaugh was the second male finisher in a time of 16:51.

Kathleen Jobes was the top female finisher in a time of 17:50 followed by Willow Childs of Allentown, who finished in 19:27.

Other upcoming races in the Lehigh Valley are:

Quadzilla 15K, Trexler Game Preserves, Schnecksville, July 19, $40, www.quadzilla15k.com

Emmaus Dash and Splash 5K, July 22, $20 includes pool admission, www.brynmawrracing.com

Jeff Moeller is a regular contributor and has been running since 1982. Please submit your comments and suggestions to the sports department.