Hounds and Harriers Run
BY BARBARA RUSHMAN
SOUTH ORANGE, NJ--The 20th Annual Hounds and Harriers Run (3 miles) was held on Saturday October 8 at South Mountain Reservation. The day was ideal for running with overcast skies and temperatures in the low 60s.
First timer Eric Dyson (Downington, PA) and his beagle mix Griffin, crossed the line first in 16:02, the second fastest time ever run at a Hounds and Harriers Run. The only faster time and the race record go back to 2002 when David Panish (Washington DC) and his lab Karma ran a 15:49. Second to finish was Liam Gallagher and his hound Danny (Morristown) in 17:01 followed by Peter Hyland (Glen Gardner) and coonhound Jake in 17:22. The womans division was won by 2014 winners, Lauren Santonastaso (Springfield) and her beagle/Jack Russell mix Macy (20:26). Runner-up was a newcomer to the race, Abigail Wentworth and her pit bull Rose (Bedminster).
A second shorter event called the Paws from the Past was held for dogs that are retired from running the longer course due to age or disability. Participants in the Paws event included Oreo Harootunian (Madison), Mario Cuchiaro (Whitehouse Station), Ollie Winters (Wayne), Rosie Fox (Milford), Brody and Nicky Kelly (Somerset). All received a ribbon and a toy.
The event was created for people that run with their dogs on a regular basis and would like to participate in a race where they are welcome. Most local road races do not allow dogs. Besides NJ, the race drew entries from PA, NY, VT, and RI. Each entrant received a gift bag and a T-shirt and bandanna designed by Swedish artist Eva Riise.
This race is a favorite of all that come because there are few opportunities to run a race with your dog. Here is just one comment sent in by Reid Prebenda: It was the heart that compelled you make this happen year in and year out with so many logistical challenges. It was with that heart and your vision that you created a magical place where union of dog and owner could celebrate friendship and love in the autumn colors. And it is with that heart that you have seared many precious memories into all of our hearts. That is a truly invaluable gift. So thank you with all of my heart. Reids brother, Troy: It was a community that brought us joy and connection; the H & H community was more than just welcoming. It was a kind community where people didnt know each other to start, yet we ended up feeling as though we knew everyone just by coming to run with our dogs year after year. The Prebenda family, long time Chatham residents, have returned to the race from Rhode Island ever since their relocation in 2012.
Seventeen individuals or families donated between $100 and $300 each in memory of past pets. They include: Karen Fox, Greg Mandak, Barb and John Rushman, Peter Hyland, Michelle Kraweak, Bonnie Ashe, Julie Corbin, Tim Hunt, Susan Duncan, Chris and Debbie Kelly, Julie and Michael Burke, Mark DePiano, Dorothy Hughes, The Galbraith family, Christopher Joralamon, Diane Redling and Terry Thomson. They received gift bags.
In addition to 10 placement awards, awards were given to first shelter adoptee or rescued dog, first veteran dog (age 10 or over), first small and first large dog. Parallel awards were given for men and women.
Local supporters donated in-kind goods and services: Merlicks Town Farm, Express Printing Services (East Hanover), Wyndham Hamilton Park Hotel, the Morristown Running Company, Lifetime Fitness (Florham Park), and Westfield Veterinary Group. This year the event is associated with Superhero Events and supported by the Rose City Runners Club.
You can learn more about the event and see videos and photos by visiting http://www.HoundAndHarriers.com.