Thir­teenth An­nual Rev Run set for April 22

The Times Herald (Norristown, PA) - - FRONT PAGE - By Gary Puleo gpuleo@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @Mus­tangMan48 on Twit­ter

UP­PER MERION » Last July, un­der the Na­tional Memo­rial Arch at Val­ley Forge Na­tional His­tor­i­cal Park, the folks at Val­ley Forge Tourism and Con­ven­tion Board (VFTCB) pre­sented a record­break­ing do­na­tion of $54,000 raised from April’s Val­ley Forge Rev­o­lu­tion­ary 5-Mile Run to the na­tional park.

With the 13th An­nual Rev Run

Get­ting tough on turn­pike toll dodgers

When law-abid­ing mo­torists are con­stantly asked to pay more, it’s only right to crack down on scofflaws.

on April 22 draw­ing ever closer, the county’s eventspon­sor­ing tourism agency is aim­ing to out­run that amount in more ways than one.

“We’re not just hop­ing to top last year’s record of giv­ing $54,000 to the park, we will def­i­nitely ex­ceed it,” said Mike Bow­man, Pres­i­dent & CEO of VFTCB. “So, by the time we’re done with this year’s event, we’ll have given back more than $350,000 to­tal to the park over the course of Rev Run’s life­time. Val­ley Forge is known na­tion­ally and in­ter­na­tion­ally, so we’re be­yond proud to keep sup­port­ing key pro­gram­ming, and im­prove­ment projects at this gem of a des­ti­na­tion.”

The 2017 run it­self had drawn an all-time high of 1,500-plus par­tic­i­pants, noted Bow­man at the July check pre­sen­ta­tion.

“More than 17,000 peo­ple have par­tic­i­pated in the Rev Run,” he said. “Val­ley Forge Na­tional His­tor­i­cal Park is one of the re­gion’s most vis­ited des­ti­na­tions, and we are thrilled to present our largest-ever do­na­tion to help sup­port key pro­gram­ming and im­prove­ment projects in the Park with funds from this year’s Rev Run.”

Since 2005, run­ners of all skill lev­els have trekked the five-mile, USATF-cer­ti­fied, closed course that fol­lows the Joseph Plumb Martin Trail, and fol­lows the scenic and hilly ter­rain of the park with steady climbs and de­scents, a mix of roads and trails, and ends with a tough up­hill climb over the fi­nal quar­ter-mile to the fin­ish line at the park’s Vis­i­tor Cen­ter. The event also in­cludes a three-mile walk along the Joseph Plumb Martin Trail. The 1.776 kilo­me­ter Young Pa­tri­ots Run for kids ages 6-13 passes the Muhlenberg Bri­gade huts.

Cash prizes are awarded to the top three over­all male and fe­male win­ners, with cus­tom medals be­ing awarded to the top three fin­ish­ers in each age bracket. Funds raised are part of var­i­ous in­fra­struc­ture im­prove­ment projects and pro­gram­ming to en­hance vis­i­tor ex­pe­ri­ence at the park.

Park Su­per­in­ten­dent Steve Sims had elab­o­rated on the many “high-pri­or­ity projects” that would be made pos­si­ble by last year’s $54,000 do­na­tion, in­clud­ing fu­ture main­te­nance needs of Sul­li­van’s Bridge, the new pedes­trian span over the Schuylkill River; de­sign and con­struc­tion of a pub­lic trail head and im­prove­ments as part of a new meadow trail and man­age­ment plan; ex­pan­sion of the out­door gar­den with sev­eral va­ri­eties of peren­ni­als in front of the vis­i­tor cen­ter en­trance, and de­sign of new park in­for­ma­tion and ori­en­ta­tion kiosk pan­els be­tween the Vis­i­tor Cen­ter and park­ing lot.

An avid run­ner who joined in the Rev Run for the first time in 2016, Sims said he wasn’t pre­pared to face such a mighty ob­sta­cle so close to the fin­ish line.

“That last hill is a doozy,” he said pri­vately af­ter the check pre­sen­ta­tion. “You have to save up a lit­tle en­ergy over the course of the five miles so you can make it up the last 100 yards of that hill. But dur­ing my first Rev Run I de­vel­oped an emo­tional con­nec­tion to Val­ley Forge Na­tional His­tor­i­cal Park. It caused me to re­flect on the de­ter­mi­na­tion and re­solve of the pa­triot sol­diers and what it means to over­come diver­sity. “I be­lieve Gen. George Wash­ing­ton ex­pected me to give it my all and run up that hill. It is cer­tainly no com­par­i­son to the tri­als faced by the sol­diers of the Con­ti­nen­tal Army dur­ing the win­ter en­camp­ment here,” he added, “but each time I run the Rev Run and reach that last 100 yards I will give it my all. It is one way to honor the sac­ri­fices of the Con­ti­nen­tal sol­diers who ex­em­pli­fied re­solve and de­ter­mi­na­tion. And as su­per­in­ten­dent, I will give my all to serve this park.”

The Rev Run kicks off at 8:30 a.m. at 1400 N. Outer Line Drive on April 22.

To reg­is­ter, visit www. val­ley­forge.org/rev­o­lu­tion­ary-run/reg­is­tra­tion.

Of­fi­cials gather at the Na­tional Memo­rial Arch for a pre­sen­ta­tion of the check for $54,000, whch was raised dur­ing last year’s Rev Run.

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