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Saturday, July 13, 2002 -- Morgantown, WV
WV Brew Pub Twilight 5-Miler (MAGP #5) (iPO Event Id#: 4932)
Article by Dave Huffman with photos by Dave McKain

[Details] [Coverage]
[Overall Results] [Results by Class]
Pictures: [Set 1] [Set 2] [Set 3] [Set 4] [Set 5] [Set 6] [Set 7]
Past Event Coverage: [2000] [2001]

Race Pic
An evening run along the Mon River in Morgantown
I had heard so many great things about the first two years of the WV Brew Pub's Twilight 5 Miler that I was really looking forward to Saturday evening and I definitely wasn't disappointed. I knew that on the very first Brew Pub race, mother nature had put on quite a show just before race time, and it almost looked like she was going to show up once again. Luckily though, she decided to spare the runners and walkers this year from the rain and just gave us a little humidity instead (I anxiously thought that this would only add to my enjoyment of some post race 'liquid refreshment', Brew Pub style!)

For the second week in a row now, I have to apologize again. This story will probably not be exactly objective because I participated in the race, but I'll do my best. It comes from the perspective of a 'middle of the packer'. The only time I see the lead runners is when they're lining up for the start and picking up their trophies afterwards. I so admire them!

The 5 Miler kicked off just after seven with the 5K Walk following right behind. The race began in front of the WV Brew Pub and headed down University Avenue until making a loop around Larry Smith's before heading onto the rail trail. There was something very fun and liberating about being able to run right down the middle of always busy University Avenue and not having to worry about being run over. That alone was almost worth the entry fee.

Race Pic
The pack hits the trail
Once on the rail trail, runners headed north to the Core Arboretum, while walkers went in the opposite direction towards the lock and dam. There was a wonderful group of people hanging around the finish area at the Riverfront Amphitheatre Park and also at the bottom of the stairs of the Brew Pub who gave all runners a big round of applause as we passed on by, not even a mile into the race. I'd just like to say 'thanks' to them, cheering can be like a little shot of adrenaline and I need all the help I can get.

After about a mile I settled into a comfortable pace as the trail went on to pass the Seneca Center and head towards the Core Arboretum. Businesses and housing were now behind and it was nothing but green trees lining both sides of the trail. As I was nearing the entrance to the Arboretum loop, I remembered one little goal I had made myself prior to the race: to make it to the start of the 3/4-mile loop turnaround before the lead runners had completed it. It wasn't to be though. Two lead runners were flying as they passed on by me. I didn't care though, it was great to actually see what a five minute per mile pace looks like up close in a race, even if they were going in the opposite direction than me.

Race Pic
Ed Frohnapfel kicks for the finish
Next was the best part of the course in my opinion, the trail through the Arboretum! Now I enjoy running on streets, sidewalks, and paved trails, but there's nothing like running on a dirt trail through the woods. (Someone in Morgantown should organize a 100 percent 'trail race'! I should be quiet, or somebody will probably ask me why I don't do it.) Anyway, I was in the middle of a little group of runners and it was a complete blast running through that narrow, secluded path with it's quick little up and downs, with rocks and roots that made one have to concentrate on where to step. Even with the extra little hazards, runners still jockeyed for position and it felt like the pace actually quickened. I know my breath sure did.

Once back out on the rail trail, it was all backtracking our footsteps to the finish line. I passed by my girlfriend and cheered her on as she was just entering the 3/4-mile turnaround loop. Her one goal for the race was not to be the 'caboose', as she puts it. I keep telling her that it doesn't matter how fast you finish, the important thing is just being out there and 'doing it', and I completely believe that.

I did have one more little goal that I'm not even sure how it came to be. I'm sure anyone who runs in the MAGP series, regardless of their ability level, comes to know very well the runners that run about the same pace as themselves and have similar finishing times. (When the back of people's heads start to get familiar, you know you're there.) One such runner in my 'group' is Barbara Lagodna, who I think is simply a great runner and person. For the past few races I've gotten to know her shadow pretty well and it was a secret goal of mine to try and beat her. Well, I was a little more fortunate than her and at least one of my goals came true this day. I do realize by writing this that I have completely cursed myself to eating her dust for the remainder of the year.

Beer Pic
And there's more where that came from...
Well, if you're going to eat someone's dust at a race, there's simply no better place to do it at than the WV Brew Pub's Twilight 5 Miler. First off, if you were still hungry after some dust eating, the Brew Pub had a great buffet style banquet offered to runners and their guests. And to wash it all down with, (I personally did a little too much washing down that night) was their finest brands of liquid refreshment. You would have thought those red tickets were gold! Top that off with a cool shirt, a commemorative glass, great prizes and plenty of atmosphere, and you have one great event that continues to grow in popularity each year.

If it hadn't been for me using up all my tickets (and my girlfriends) I would've gotten the names of the winners for the evening, I'm sorry! [complete results] I'm hoping that my legs and liver will be able to make it through the next few weeks with the Summer Tsunami Slam 5K coming up next week and Morgantown favorite Gene's Run in early August. Both of which are also offering free 'legal' refreshments! God I love this town. How am I ever going to get faster with events like this? I feel like I'm running in Mo'towns 'Triple Crown' of free legal refreshments and loving every moment of it!