LAMOINE — This year’s Flattop 5K and kids’ fun run, set for Saturday, March 28, will mark the tenth edition of the race held in honor of former Marine Patrol officer and state legislator Bill Pinkham.
There will be snowbanks on the side of the road along the course, a traditional start to the busy Down East road race season. “Every year, we have to pound direction signs into the snowbanks,” organizer Robin Emery said. “About 90 runners are already signed up. I think a lot of people are waiting to see what the weather’s going to do.”
Pinkham passed away at the end of the Walter Hunt Memorial Fourth of July 3,000-Meter Road Race in Bangor in 2005. “Bill, with his seemingly unbroken streak of race attendance, rangy frame and white marine’s flattop, served as a pacing benchmark for a generation of runners,” Brian Hubbell, now a state representative, said in 2005. Pinkham’s “flattop” earned him the affectionate nickname “Q-tip” from fellow runners, so “Flattop” was an obvious choice for the name of a race in his memory.
The race is sponsored by Eden Athletics and is the first event in the 2014 Jack Russell’s Steakhouse Points Series. Last year’s 5K winners were Spencer McElwain of Caribou and Jennifer VanDongen of Bar Harbor in a field of more than 300 participants. Yet another runner-legislator, Louie Luchini of Ellsworth, set the course record in 2010 with his time of 14:58.
The kids’ one-mile run is set for 9:30 a.m., and the 5K begins at 10 a.m. The cost is $15 for 5K runners and $1 for the fun run. Proceeds support a scholarship fund for a student runner at Sumner High School.
“It’s just a really nice thing for our town,” Emery said. “I’m usually the only one running around here, and to see hundreds of runners on our street is really cool. We’ve got a great committee helping. Some of them aren’t even runners, but they want to be involved.”
The race beings at the Lamoine School, which is on Route 184, about six miles from the intersection of Routes 1 and 184.
Registration closes on race day at 9 a.m. Call Robin at 667-9219 or Tom at 667-9771.