Newcomers earn victories in Applefest road race

Devon Mann, Writer

The start of the fall season brings the annual Applefest fair. One of the main attractions for thrill-seekers is the midway full of rides — including the Gravitron, the Fireball, and the Himalaya. But, for those who don’t like coasters and rides, there is always the food tent full of baked goods and fried foods. Another major event is the annual Applefest Road Race. Members of Fenton and the surrounding areas sign up each year to participate in the race.

“I run cross-country, so I entered the race to compete athletically,” runner Jack Dooling said. “I’m looking to compete at my best, but I just run in the race for fun and my own enjoyment.”

Whether it was to set a new athletic best, or to fulfill a more sentimental, personal goal, competitors from all different walks of life gathered together to run.

“I ran it because my friend runs in the race every year and I decided to join her” Agnes Meisch said. “She is also my workout partner, so I like to be involved in all the athletic activities she is in.”

Competitors can choose to run in the 10k, the 5k, the 1 mile, or ¼ mile races. The athletes are divided into different competition groups based on their ages and gender. Dooling ran in the teens 5k category and has been training extensively leading up to the race.

“As a member of the cross country team, I’ve been staying in shape for it with my normal practices,” Dooling said. “During the last three weeks, I’ve increased my training regimen in order to be prepared for the race.”

Some competitors choose a lighter workout regimen in the lead up to the race. These athletes decide to take an easier course of training in preparation for the race.

“I competed in the older adults category, age group 50-54,” Meisch said. “I did good, I had a 10 minute mile. It’s a new best for me. I run two to three days a week to stay in shape and my own, personal enjoyment. I do not train that hard for the race, because I know I’m not going to win. I try to do my best, but, I’m not expecting much.”

Meisch came in second place in her category. As a veteran of the competitive races, this Meisch’s second race for the Applefest road race. Meisch has competed in other road races including the annual Milford Classic, in the city of Milford. But, this was the first road race Dooling has ever competed in.

“Since I compete through my school’s cross-country team, I thought I would know what to expect,” Dooling said.”But, this race was totally different. You run in the street and through the town, on a nice, flat surface instead of in the woods like a normal cross-country meet. This race is one entire lap, but the other races are two to three laps in the woods, so it feels shorter. ”

The Applefest Road Race is an opportunity for all people get involved athletically within the community. The race is one of the key events of the Applefest weekend that brings people together to watch or take part in the race. The competition allows for people to set new goals for themselves, and keep reaching a new best within their athletics. The race opens up new experiences and opportunities. Whether it is racing for competition, or just for fun, Applefest’s annual road race is always a great activity to watch or take part in.