It’s time to branch out and try races in new areas … that’s my thought, at least! On a recent vacation, I was brainstorming ways to make running more fun. Granted, it already is the ‘funnest’ (I know, not a word, but I like the sound of it) thing in the world to me … but there is always room for improvement in life, including taking fun up another notch.
With this new outlook, I began traversing the myriad number of online running calendar sites, and came across an event that caught my attention immediately. This event, the 7th Annual Mildred’s Trail Dash, features a 5K run/walk and a 9K trail run, and takes place on Saturday, July 9, 2016 near in Oakland, Oregon. Oakland is located north of Roseburg, and south of Eugene right off I-5. From Eugene, it is approximately 60 minutes to reach Oakland.
What made Mildred’s Trail Dash stick out and catch my attention so fervently was the history surrounding the land the course travels along, as well as Mildred herself. Here is a brief history lesson, directly from the experts:
“In 1983, Mildred Kanipe, a colorful farmer passed away, and left her beloved ranch to the public as a county park. Mildred’s gift included almost 1,100 acres of land consisting of pastures, creeks, rolling hills, orchards and forests. Historical structures include a turn-of-the-century schoolhouse, a farmhouse, and outbuildings. She wished the buildings to be preserved, a ranch museum developed, equestrian trails to be available and the land was to remain an animal refuge, the land and plants preserved.”
Unfortunately, in 2005 due to financial constraints, the Douglas County Commissioners considered returning this beloved park back to the Mildred Kanipe Trust. Thankfully, a group organized in response to this to make sure the park would remain in the public domain and would be open to the public for their enjoyment. And with that, this group of determined individuals, created The Friends of Mildred Kanipe Memorial Park Association which is a 501 c 3 nonprofit.
Mildred reminds me a lot of myself. There is a book, called “For Love of the Land: The Legacy of Mildred Kanipe“, by Lois Christiansen Eagleton, that goes into deeper details about this amazing woman.
I could go on forever about the historical points surrounding this event. Let me brief you on the race, itself. Mildred’s Trail Dash is an annual event, now in it’s seventh year, put together by the Roseburg Road Runners and The Friends of Mildred Kanipe Memorial Park. Both the 9K and 5K distances share a start/finish line at the Day Use Area of Mildred Kanipe Memorial Park. You can’t choose a wrong distance – both courses will take runners and walkers through gorgeous single track (mostly) trails that saunter through stunning open meadows, into douglas fir forests, and past beautiful oak savannahs. The 5K participants will get challenged with one hill, and the 9K participants shall experience 2 hills. The trails are somewhat technical, in that they have roots, rocks and uneven footing.
Bring along the entire family, either to run/walk or just to spectate. There will be historic displays available for viewing during the event, and there is a new, completed campground in the equestrian area. Additionally, there are new geocaches hidden in the park to find, and an calm, easy to stroll nature trail. There is plenty to do to keep everyone busy, in addition to cheering on participants!
Registration is currently $30 for the 9K or $20 for the 5K until June 28. This includes the race, a commemorative t-shirt, and a complimentary membership to Friends of Mildred Kanipe Memorial Park. After June 28, register day-of at the event for $25 for the 9K or $15 for the 5K – but a shirt will not be included. You may purchase an event shirt for $15 if registering after June 28. The race kicks off at 8:30 a.m., and the registration area (including packet pick-up) will begin at 7 a.m.
I’m also pleased to report that all event proceeds will benefit The Friends of Mildred Kanipe Memorial Park Association.
I hope you will consider joining me at the 7th Annual Mildred’s Trail Dash! I excited to run in a new area of the state, and in a new (to me) trail race! This is going to be AWESOME!
Date: Saturday, July 9, 2016
Time: 8:30 a.m.
Distances: 9K and 5K run/walk
Cost: $30 for 9K, $20 for 5K until June 28. Race day registration available for additional fee.
Register: Click here to register (scroll to bottom)