By Sarah Reynolds
The annual Isle of Palms Connector Run and Walk for the Child began 17 years ago with the opening of the Isle of Palms Connector, and continues today with the goal of supporting the prevention of child abuse and other child-related programs. Net proceeds from the event go to support this cause. Last year’s event hosted over 1200 participants and raised over $50,000 for child-related charities located right here in the Lowcountry, including the Dee Norton Lowcountry Children’s Center, Darkness to Light, MUSC Children’s Hospital, Windwood Farm Home for Children and others.
Offering views of the Atlantic Ocean, local creeks, marshes and the Intracoastal Waterway, the 10K and 5K races begin at 8am the foot of the IOP Connector on the Isle of Palms. 10K runners and 5K runners and walkers will cross the connector toward Mount Pleasant, then return to the Isle of Palms, with the race finishing at the front beach area. Following its finish, participants will enjoy a post-race festival featuring food and family fun.
The course for the 2009 race has been slightly modified to simplify the 10K run. The starting line will remain the same as previous years’ races; however, the 10K turnaround point as well as the race’s finish line will be moved, with the turnaround taking place on the Connector just before Rifle Range Road, and the finish line being moved to JC Long Boulevard, close to the corner of Palm Boulevard.
Racers may pick up their race packets or participate in late registration on Thursday, October 1 from 3 – 7pm at the Isle of Palms Exchange Club, located at 201 Palm Boulevard, and on Friday, October 2 from 11am – 7pm. Packet pickup and late registration will also be available the morning of the event, from 6:30 – 7:30am at the Isle of Palms Public Safety Building.
Following the race, awards for the 10K and 5K runs will be given to the top three overall male and female finishers, the top male and female masters and grand masters finishers and the top three male and female finishers in 15 age categories.
Fees for the 10K or 5K run are $30 if received by Friday, September 25, and $35 thereafter. 5K walker fees are $25 if received by September 25, and $30 thereafter. For those interested in helping the cause but do not wish to participate in the race, there is also a $10 “sleep in” option in which one may receive an official race t-shirt without race participation. Participants who register online have the option of receiving official finisher certificates as well as Time Tracker messaging to obtain live race results.
The Isle of Palms Connector will be closed to vehicles beginning at 7am the morning of the race. The event is presented by Bi-Lo. The Isle of Palms Connector Run and Walk for the Child is organized by the Exchange Clubs of Mount Pleasant and the Isle of Palms, the City of Isle of Palms and the Town of Mount Pleasant.
For further details or to download a registration form for mail-in, visit www.IOPConnectorRun.com or register call the run’s info line at 843-886-8294.