More than 100 runners gathered at the Tortoise and the Hare statue in Van Cortlandt Park Saturday morning to raise money for those seriously affected by the Boston Marathon bombings and for families of deceased victims.
“The Boston bombings affected the entire running community,” said Bette Clark, president of the Van Cortlandt Track Club, which organized the event.
The April bombings claimed four lives and wounded 264 others.
This year, the Ramble for Boston replaced the annual Riverdale Ramble, a charity-run through the streets of Riverdale that is usually held on the same weekend.
The event was open to anyone willing to donate. Runners could either contribute online before the event or donate the morning of the run.
The minimum donation was $5, which allowed donors to choose between either running or walking the 5-kilometer cross-country course in Van Cortlandt Park. Those so inclined were encouraged to continue for an extra lap.
All together, the club managed to raise $1,018 for the Boston One Fund.
Ms. Clark said the group chose the new route — previous Rambles ran through the streets of Riverdale — because street permits are expensive and difficult to obtain.
“The Ramble costs a lot, and since there was a lack of sponsors we couldn’t even break even,” Ms. Clark said.
Kevin Shelton-Smith had the best time, finishing with a time of 20:05.
However, unlike the much larger and more competitive Riverdale Ramble, no trophies were awarded, times went largely unrecorded and most participants appeared to be running for a sense of community and the satisfaction of the charitable act.
“By making it more informal, we were hoping to include those who might not otherwise run,” Ms. Clark said, adding, “It’s a really nice way of fostering a community event.”
Ms. Clark was pleased with the new route and said it helped maximize the group’s ability to raise charitable funds.
“The Van Cortlandt Park run was a great model,” she said. “Without much effort we were able to raise a lot of money for charity.”
The Van Cortlandt Track Club is sponsoring another charity run, this one a competitive race, on Sunday, June 30. Money raised will be donated to the American Cancer Society–Bronx Region. Registration is at 9 a.m. and the race begins at 10 a.m. For more information, got to www.vctc.org.
Those who wish to donate to the Boston One Fund can do so at https://secure.onefundboston.org.