Runners come out for Race for Literacy

Published 8:29 pm Saturday, November 29, 2008

Adria Joseph and Lisa Muslinski were waiting on their sister to finish the half-marathon after they had completed their own 5Ks.

Toni Neally and Marie Johns, both 63, finished their 5K together. The two friends met at a race in Virginia Beach and have been running mates ever since.

Cross country athletes, running enthusiasts and even some city leaders came out Saturday morning to brave the chilly November weather for the 2008 Race for Literacy.

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“The turnout was great, and everyone seemed to have had a good time despite the chilly weather,” said Jesse J. Lindsey, publisher of the Suffolk News-Herald.

More than 300 runners competed in the race, which was sponsored by the Suffolk News-Herald to benefit the United Way’s Raising a Reader program.

Throughout the morning, runners competed in the 5K and half-marathon races (for a complete list of results, see page 1B) all the while being cheered on by friends and family members at the Tidewater Community College campus.

Beginning at 6 a.m., race committee members took to the streets of North Suffolk helping to set up the 13.1 mile race route throughout the River Front neighborhood and modeling and simulation corridor.

“The reason this race was a success lies solely on the shoulders of our great volunteers,” said Lindsey.

According to preliminary figures, the race helped bring in more than $15,000 for the United Way and its fight against illiteracy in the city of Suffolk.

But for the runners themselves, the run was just as worthy a cause.

“You can get healthy even at 63,” Neally exclaimed as she finished the race. “We can do it, you can too.”