Happy Birthday at Harbor Hustle 5K

By Herb Townsend

STONE HARBOR, NJ--The Harbor Hustle 5K was held on July 1, 2018 in this upscale South Jersey seashore resort.

For me, this day was special--my 80th birthday. The good news is that I am now in a new age group. The not-so-good news is that this race did not have an 80+ category. As a result, I had to be content with a second place medal in the 70+ age group. But, it helps to believe that five-year age groups up to 100+ are recorded in the big book in the sky.

Unlike Florida, where I live during the colder months, only a few races in the North have the 80+ awards. The usual explanation of race organizers is that there are not enough over-80 runners to justify the category. To them I say that that if they have it, the older runners might come. Moreover, the incremental cost of the additional awards is insignificant compared to the additional entry fees.

The race was run on asphalt roads through the resort, and was entirely flat. Most of the 420 finishers will remember this race for the heat. Although the weather service reported temps in the low 80s and humidity at 50%, the summer sun on the blacktop road surfaces made it seem much hotter.

Peter Borger, age 18, of Malvern, PA was first overall in 16:03. The first female was Elizabeth McDonald, 24, of Bryn Mawr, PA in 19:48.

Editor's Note: Happy Birthday Herb! You are an inspiration to younger runners.