5/6/2011 - Inaugural Ramble Run 12K and 5K race Saturday in South Asheville
by Karen Chávez
It's Mother's Day weekend in Asheville! So many things to do to honor the Moms that make things happen here in the Mountains of Western North Carolina!
ASHEVILLE -- With three children -- one girl and two boys -- Janet Sword decided the best way to celebrate Mother's Day is to just run away.
But the South Asheville mom will actually be running in celebration of motherhood alongside her 10-year-old daughter, Grayson, on Saturday at the inaugural and "mom-friendly" Ramble Run 12K and 5K at Biltmore Park, presented by Mission Sports Medicine.
"I think it's going to be fabulous," said Sword, 39. "We're getting to spend time together and getting to do something we both enjoy and love. I'm hoping to start this healthy habit in her life."
Sword said she has been running since middle school, and Grayson participates in Girls on the Run at her school.
"She won her age group at the Veritas 5K race last year, and I think that created a little spark," Sword said of her daughter's love of running. The two will race in the Ramble Run's 5K, or 3.1-mile race.
"I like running because I get to reflect on my day. It's a good way to get my feelings out," Grayson said.
As for running side by side with Mom, she said, "I think we're going to do it together because we run the same speed. I feel really excited. I want to be the same runner as my Mom when I grow up."
Race organizers picked Mother's Day weekend in part to avoid clashing with other big races, such as the Biltmore Kiwanis 5K/15K on May 15, and to encourage moms to get outdoors with their kids, said John Blexrud, an Asheville Track Club board member.
"We really worked to tie in to Mother's Day," Blexrud said. "The trend is for more women to be running and racing. That's where a lot of the growth in running has been coming from."
He said out of the 1,230 runners signed up by Tuesday, nearly 800 were women. There are also 65 mother-child teams signed up between the 5K and 12K races.
To honor all those running women and mothers, the Reuter YMCA and Great Beginnings Pediatric Dentistry/Haldeman Orthodontics are offering free child care (for ages of 5-12) so that moms (and fathers) can run. There will be special race bibs runners can wear on their backs to honor their moms