Runners break from the start line in the annual River Run 10K at Englishman River Park Sunday

Runners break from the start line in the annual River Run 10K at Englishman River Park Sunday

Annual River Run draws ‘enhanced’ crowd

More than 120 tackle Trail run at Englishman River Regional Park to benefit Mid Vancouver Island Habitat Enhancement Society

Martyn Tuffs and Carolyn Swanson were the top finishers last weekend as the sixth annual River Run drew 125 enthusiastic participants to the trails of Englishman River Regional Park.

Martyn was the first finisher in the 10-kilometre run, in 42 minutes, 1 second. Swanson led the women in a time of 43:14.

A 5K course was added to create a family friendly run/walk option. Ben Weber was first across the line among men in 25:38 and Maureen Forscutt topped the women in 30:33. Lennox Weber was the top youth finisher under 14 years of age, finishing with his dad in 25:38.

The yearly event is a fundraiser for the Mid Vancouver Island Habitat Enhancement Society, which performs river enhancement for salmon habitat and monitors the specific indicators throughout the watershed to track the health of the river. This fundraiser helps to raise core funds for the society to help it continue to do its work in the area.

Top prizes included a free month gym membership at Iron Warehouse, a hand-carved Whale’s Tail medallion donated by Jay and Val Kealey, gift certificates from Frontrunners and prize packs from the Regional District of Nanaimo.  Deborah Nicol of Macdonald Realty sponsored the Under 14’s prizes.  All participants received a medal at the finish line.

Save On foods donated the food for the event, Thrifty Foods supplied water and Pacific Brimm supplied hot coffee and muffins for volunteers and runners. Shar-Kare donated two hanging planters that were raffled off at the event.

Other main sponsors included Island Timberlands, Herold Engineering Ltd. and Nicole Williams Photography.   Organizers thanked the many volunteers who make the event a success every year, including course monitors, bikers, first aid volunteers, Frontrunners and especially the Englishman River Regional Park for allowing them the opportunity to enjoy the park.

— Submitted by Deborah Nicol