Monday, December 30, 2013

Jingle Bell Beach Run and Couch to 5k Recap

On the Sunday before Christmas, almost 600 runners gathered to run the 9th Annual Jingle Bell Beach Run 5k and 1-mile run.  As it has been in the past, this run was hosted by Rani and Penn Henderson. But they made some big improvements to the race this year, including closing the road for safety, providing the softest t-shirts ever and trucker hats, and adding a Santa Dash keiki run.  Of course those additions did necessitate changing from a free race to a paid one, but runners certainly got a lot of bang for their buck! In addition to all of the new perks, they also had the ever-popular costume contest, great prizes for the winners and tons of lucky number giveaways.

Part of the Couch to 5k Group
The Jingle Bell Beach Run 5k is also the culmination of our Couch to 5k training program.  This year Coach Maggie Leite led Dawn Barnes, Loretta Buasriyottiya, Emily Buasriyottiya, Rene Hanavan, Charo Aparicio Bill, KC Texiera, Claire Texiera and Valerie Strawn to fantastic finishes at the race.  Jim Lichnovsky and Nancy Taylor also completed the program, but were out of town for the actual race - we know they'll be doing one soon, though!  Congratulations to all of them on their accomplishment and especially to Valerie Strawn and KC Texiera who won awards for their consistency (Valerie) and improvement (KC)! 
Valerie Strawn
The winners of the 5k were Tommy Vonach in 16:12 and Bridget Pyke in 17:41, both setting new course records in the process! In the 1-mile run, Eric Miya blazed to a 5:06 win and Skyler Kiser was the first female finisher in 7:36.  Full race results are available on the race website.

Race Winners

After the race, the keiki lined up and ran either a 100 or 200 yard keiki dash, led by race winners and Santa!

But the best part of the event is seeing what costumes people come up with!

This year we saw Mary and Joseph:

The Grinch:

A snowflake:

And the eventual winner, a wrapped Christmas present (yes, they actually ran the race like that - and finished ahead of me!)

Special thanks to Penn and Rani as well as all of the volunteers.  Definitely put this race on your list if you're in town during the Christmas season next year! (More photos of the race are available here.)

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Thanksgiving Weekend Wrap-Up

There was so much going on over the Thanksgiving weekend that it was hard to keep track of it all. We've tried to compile the highlights and results here for you. We are so thankful for all the great opportunities we have on this island to be active and that so many people came out and took advantage of them!

9th Annual Wobble Gobble

We really enjoy the chance to offer this run on Walua Trail on Thanksgiving morning. This year over 280 people showed up to run either the 6.4 mile, 3.5 mile or 1 mile distance. But the most impressive thing is that they also brought with them 373 pounds of canned goods for the Hawaii Island Food Basket - over 200 pounds more than last year!

Results from the race are available here and more photos are available here.  Here are a couple of our favorites, though:

Hats courtesy of Debbie Braswell

Modeling the winners' hats
Keiki enjoying the run

In the 6.4 mile run, Garrett Prinslow took 1st place in 38:28.  For the ladies it was Rani Henderson taking first place (while pushing her son Cole in a stroller) in 44:18. In the 3.5 mile distance, Brooke Myers once again ran away from the field, finishing first overall for the second year in a row with a time of 23:26 and breaking her own course record in the process. Christopher "Atlas" Smith was second overall and the first male in 24:37.  Finally, for the 1-milers, Lawrence Barrett came in with a screaming time of 5:59 and Kristina Hamilton finished in 8:07 to win for the ladies.

The Wobble Gobble would not be possible without the help of our volunteers, who we are extremely appreciative of: Rich, Jolene and Ryan Mears provided the post-race refreshments; Larry and Laura Kniffin served as traffic control and aid station support; Kyra and Richard Bronson set up an aid station in front of their house; Jolene and Jacob Head and family also set up an aid station in front of their Keauhou Veterinary Clinic; Cary Aurand helped with signouts; Ali Steiner, Kimberly Madsen and John Ferdico assisted with course set-up; Chico helped pass out popsicle sticks and take pictures; Jennifer Stike's sons helped pass out medals to the keiki; and Leonard Torricer provided ice and pre and post-race support. Thanks again to all who came out and participated or volunteered!

6th Annual (Tri)ptophan Turkey Day Triathlon

For the 6th year in a row, Kym and Kris Kiser and their daughters hosted a triathlon on Thanksgiving morning down at the Kailua Pier. 100 people made it out there to race a 1/3 mile swim, 16 mile bike and 2 mile run. Coming in first was Tommy Vonach with a time of 58:26 and Jeni Winegarner was the women's champ in 1:04:48.

Tommy Vonach Photo courtesy of Kiser Motorcycles
Jeni Winegarner Photo courtesy of Kiser Motorcycles
Full results from the race are available here. Thanks to the Kisers for taking the time out of their Thanksgiving Day to host this race!

Post Pigout Peamania

If either of those events weren't enough to work off your turkey, Peaman hosted the Post Pigout Peamania at the Kailua Pier on Sunday morning.  This race was aptly named, as there was definitely mania!  Peaticipants swam 1/4 mile and then ran a 2-mile loop before coming back and doing it all over again. Of course, as with any Peaman race, there were many variations - a shorter Peawee course which could be completed once or twice, relays, swimmers that didn't run and runners that didn't swim!

For some reason, the results didn't appear in the online version of West Hawaii Today, but a picture of the paper results are below (pull out your magnifying glasses)!

Tommy Vonach outran Luis De La Torre on the last run loop to take first place overall in 37:23.  Rani Henderson was first for the ladies in 44:26.  Jim McCleery and his wife, Big Island Running Company employee Maggie, took first place in the full course relay in 46:17, while Becky and David Aegler took first place in the Peawee relay with a time of 29:14.  The Peawee results encompass people who did anything less than the full distance, so includes people who did one loop of the long course or two loops of the short course or anything else.


The Peaman race was missing some of its best volunteers on Sunday - Dene Sturm and Doug Henbest.  That's because Dene was off conquering the longest endurance event on the island and Doug was part of her crew.  The Ultraman World Championships started on Friday morning with a 6.2 mile swim from Kailua Pier to Keauhou Bay.  Immediately after finishing that swim, participants hopped on their bikes for the 90 mile climb to Volcano.  After spending the night in Volcano, on Saturday they rode from Volcano all the way to Hawi (approximately 170 miles).  One more night's sleep and then it was time for the run from Hawi into Kona on Sunday - a double marathon or 52.4 miles.

Dene Sturm and crew at the finish. Photo by Christine DeCarli
In addition to Dene (who finished with a total time of 33:34:34), other local athletes to complete the race this year were Jason Nixon in 32:18:00 and Laurie Beers in 34:15:33.  Congratulations to them and all the other Ultraman finishers. Full results from the race are available here.