One of the more unique races around Nashville is the Richland Creek Run, which encircles a park and caters to all types of participants. Recently, we caught up with Renee, one of the people behind the operation that puts on the race. We got her to share some insight on the race, the course, and the benefits of the race itself.
Dan: We’re proud to be sponsoring the race this year. For those who aren’t familiar with the course, what you can tell us about it?
Renee: The seventh annual Richland Creek Run & Walk presented by The Wilson Group Real Estate Services, is a five-mile timed and measured event, scheduled for Saturday, April 6, 2013. The second annual Kids’ Race begins at 7:30 a.m., the Run at 8:00 a.m., and the Walk at 8:05 a.m. All events begin and end on 48th Avenue, outside of the Cohn Adult Learning Center, 4805 Park Avenue. The course covers a large portion of the Richland Creek Greenway and part of the Sylvan Park neighborhood. The Kids’ Race features an “out and back” 3/4 mile course along 48thAvenue in Sylvan Park. Net proceeds benefit Greenways for Nashville, a not-for-profit dedicated to the creation, protection, preservation, and promotion of Nashville greenways and open spaces.
Dan: The run benefits the greenways around Nashville. If you can, talk about the impact that the race has had on the community.
Renee: District 24 Council Representative Jason Holleman co-chairs the event with Megan Turner, organized and supported by West Nashville neighborhood associations in Sylvan Park, Richland-West End, White Bridge, Cherokee Crossing, and Cherokee Park. The Wilson Group Real Estate Services is the title sponsor. Other sustaining sponsors include Montgomery Bell Academy, St. Thomas Health Services, Ingram Industries, First Community Mortgage, Vanderbilt University, Avenue Bank, M.L. Rose, Sport Seasons, New Belgium Brewing, and Bates Nursery & Garden Center. The City Paper, Nashville Scene, Lightning 100, and Team Green Adventures are media sponsors. In-kind sponsors include, Publix, Star Bagel, Produce Place, Dose and the Hampton Inn Elliston Place.
The neighborhoods, churches, and businesses surrounding the Richland Creek Greenway support this community-inspired Run & Walk, one of two primary fundraisers that Greenways for Nashville depends upon to further its mission to support the trails system throughout Davidson County. The event brings the neighborhoods together, and friends from beyond, in celebration of the trail, and in support of all the Nashville greenways. A recent Greenways accomplishment Greenways for Nashville raised awareness and over $260,000 to help Metro acquire 600 acres of open space on the Stones River, featuring almost four miles of river frontage on the Stones and Cumberland rivers, and located along the Stones River Greenway, which will connect three other major park properties to establish a 1,500-acre regional park. Combined with other nearby parks it provides a park and greenway system for eastern Davidson County comparable in scope to Warner Parks in west Davidson County.
Dan: This will be the seventh edition of the Richland Creek Run, how much has the race grown over the years?
Renee: It has grown by 40% from the early events. We are excited to have a new venue for the awards and door prizes ceremony. M.L. Rose on Charlotte Avenue is hosting, just after the race. They are located at 4408 Charlotte Avenue. Mayor Dean will start participants off on the main event at 8:00 a.m.
Dan: The race path encircles McCabe recreation center and golf course. Given the timing of this race in early spring, are there any stories of animal participation in the race?
Renee: Lots of birds are seen from the trails. I’m sure there are a couple of rabbits or squirrels that get caught up in the event.
Dan: Nashville has made a commitment to improving and preserving greenways in recent years. In addition to making the city more beautiful and accessible, have the greenways encouraged people to stay more active in and around the city?
Renee: We hear gratitude from users regularly. It is rewarding. Some people still don’t know they are there, but with the Mayor’s Walk 100 Miles, which began year before last, there is a raised awareness of the opportunities to walk. The goal of the greenways initiative is to have a greenway within 2 miles of every Nashvillian. Right now we are at about 64%.
Dan: Speaking of, am I correct that the kid’s race is becoming a big deal?
Renee: This year will be the second running of the kid’s race. I believe we will see that grow with every year, just as the main event has.
Dan: What has been the impact of having a separate starting time for participants aiming to walk the course?
Renee:Both groups appreciate that the walkers begin just after the runners.
Dan: Lastly, where can folks find more information about the Richland Creek Run, and how can they sign up?
Renee: Participants can learn more about Richland Creek Run & Walk VII and register in advance at www.richlandcreekrun.com or through Facebook and Twitter. Pre-registration is $20 and race-day registration is $25. Pre-registration for the Kids’ Race is $10 and race-day registration is $15. Long-sleeve Hatch Show Print designed t-shirts are guaranteed to all pre-registered participants of the 5 mile Run & Walk. Thanks to Sport Seasons for your sponsorship which allows for pre-registration packet pick-up to be held on Friday, April 5th, 5-7 p.m. at the 56 White Bridge Road Sport Seasons store. Early pick up on race day, April 6, begins at 7 a.m. at Cohn School, concurrent with race-day registration.