Fisher Cruises to a Win
BY SHANNON HOFFMAN
WATSONTOWN, PA--The second annual JesVic 5K was held on Saturday, June 7, beginning and ending at the Watsontown Elementary School. The event raised $6,500 for local families battling disease and medical bills and for the Evangelical Community Hospital hospice.
The event honors two women from the area, Jessica Wade and Vicki Hitesman, who passed away to cancer in recent years. JesVic 2008 was dedicated to Mary Young of Watsontown, who passed away in February to cancer. Three-hundred-sixty-two runners and walkers, dozens of volunteers and sponsors, and the Watsontown police and fire departments banded together to make the event a success and a real testament to the power of one community. Also notable was a donation from an individual to the JesVic fund of $1,000.
Dalton won in demanding fashion, as Kip Hoffman of Watsontown crossed the line second in 17:35, and Adam Moore of Watsontown was third in 17:51.
On the womens side, former Elizabethtown College runner and All-American in cross-country, Erin Fisher of McEwensville, PA finished first in 19:09, which is a JesVic 5K record.
Last year, Ashley Shuck of Milton, PA finished at the top of the field and neck-and-neck with her roommate and teammate from Bloomsburg University, Amber Hackenberg. This year she crossed the line with another Husky cross-country team member and roommate, Beth Schwing of Hershey, PA. The two crossed the line holding hands in 20:32, good for second and third places.
Last year at JesVic, despite taking all the proper precautions to avoid any problems with the train tracks, the chance of a train going through the middle of the race increased greatly due to an overnight accident on the tracks and train rescheduling. To accommodate for this ensuing risk, the course was run in the opposite direction this year so the crossing occurs within the first 400 meters. The second time the tracks are crossed, there is a bridge.
The switch made for a race with a much different feel. The major hill of the course was shorter, but steeper, preceding a longer, more gradual downhill. There was also gradual uphill within the first mile, and the last mile was entirely on Main Street, which gave community members the ability to cheer on the runners near the finish.
The community was invited to a pre-race pasta dinner the night before at the Watson Inn in Watsontown. Entertainment was provided by local bluegrass artists Earl Pickens and Bruce Derr, and Runners Gazette editor Freddi Carlip was the speaker.
The directors of the race are looking for helpers to co-coordinate JesVic 2009 to help with tasks like recruiting sponsor businesses and planning the pasta dinner. If interested, please contact Suzie Wade at firstname.lastname@example.org or Shannon Hoffman at email@example.com.
1. Mike Dalton 16:52
1. Erin Fisher 19:09
1. Ryan Bowersox 3:10
All photos by Anna Johnson, Megan Mincemoyer, and Laura Laidacker.