Chatham’s 2020 Reindeer Run a ‘great event,’ race director says

BY CHAPEL FOWLER, News + Record Staff
Posted 12/16/20

PITTSBORO — Call this month’s virtual Reindeer Run a modified success.

As race director Jerry Lux predicted in November, the annual five-kilometer race put on by the Chatham County Partnership …

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Chatham’s 2020 Reindeer Run a ‘great event,’ race director says

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Posted
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PITTSBORO — Call this month’s virtual Reindeer Run a modified success.

As race director Jerry Lux predicted in November, the annual five-kilometer race put on by the Chatham County Partnership for Children, which ended Saturday, dropped off in terms of total runners and fundraising totals.

But the 16th annual Reindeer Run also saw a serious “reach in our participation,” Lux said, with some Chatham County runners’ family members participating from their home states across the country.

Runners, he said, were also very receptive to the option of running their 5Ks at one of five local parks across the county, as opposed to the anchor location (Central Carolina Community College’s Pittsboro campus). And that flexibility is already giving his race committee some ideas for the future.

“That was pretty cool: to see people out there running, posting pictures and submitting times from different locations,” Lux said in a phone interview Monday. “It’s definitely piqued my interest into how we can continue to do something like that while always having the in-person big event.”

And given how much the Chatham County Partnership for Children had to pivot this year because of the coronavirus pandemic — from one massive race to a 10-day window for people to run individually, on their own — Lux was mostly relieved his committee found a safe way to keep it going in the first place.

“I got a lot of feedback from people saying how much they missed the in-person race, but how excited they were to get out and do something,” Lux said. “If anything, I think having a year like this will help people see how much they enjoy (the race) in person. All in all, it was a great event.”

This year’s Reindeer Run had 132 total registrations; around 80% were solo runners, and around 20% were families participating in an adjacent fun run.

The top three overall runners in the women’s division were Jodi Wiley, 43 (first place, 24:40); Kellie Bossert, 38 (second place, 25:11); and Jenna Epplin, 19 (third place, 25:14).

The top three overall runners in the men’s division were Clint Bryan, 65 (first place, 19:58); Gabe Rogers, 12 (second place, 20:05); and Ty Willoughby, 12 (third place, 20:12).

Full results, including a breakdown by age group, can be viewed online here.

Reporter Chapel Fowler can be reached at cfowler@chathamnr.com or on Twitter at @chapelfowler.

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