Hundreds Join in Annual Freeze Your Gizzard 5K

The weekend’s blustery weather might have kept many Loudouners indoors, but it brought hundreds of them outside to run for a good cause.

In all, 448 runners of all skill levels gathered in the fields of Leesburg’s Ida Lee Park Saturday morning for the town’s annual pre-Thanksgiving 5K and mile fun run, which benefitted Loudoun Hunger Relief. Participants were asked to bring two donated canned food—donations that provided the food bank with more than 1,000 pounds of food.

Timed byPotomac RiverRunning, the 5K race kicked off at 9 a.m. and took 39-year-old Eddie Chen 17 minutes and 56.9 seconds to run all 3.1 miles around the park, making him the fastest of all 214 male runners. In the female classes, Katie West was the fastest of 234 females with a time of 20 minutes and 6.5 seconds.

While Chen and West were the first male and female runners across the line, another 14 runners were awarded first place in their own divisions.

In the male classes, John Gibson took first in the 14-and-under age group, Colby Koenig won the 15-19 age group, Ivan Boyarskiy won the 20s age group, Timothy Otto won the 30s age group, Matt Akers won the 40s age group, Rich Harfst won the 50s age group and Brian Kelly won the 60-and-over age group.

Sadie Dillard won the 14-and-under group, Emma Hunt won the 15-19 age group, Dorothy Butler won the 20s age group, Megan McCarthy won the 30s age group, Keiranne O’Donnell won the 40s age group, Brenda Mackintosh won the 50s age group and Leslie Kash won the 60-and-over age group.

Following the 5K and fun run, Best Individual Costume and Best Group Costume awards were also handed out to those who dressed up for the event. Costumes included Buzz Lightyear, an astronaut and multiple Thanksgiving turkeys.

pszabo@loudounnow.com

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