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History of the Fun Run

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History of the Fun Run

Post  Admin on Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:49 pm

Written by Paul Grosvenor, Fun Run organizer and former GHSCGNA President

Ten years ago, when I moved to this neighborhood, there was a sign in the easement behind my house stating “Future Park Site.” After a little research, I found out that it had been a “future” park site for 35 years. I went to the Glenwood Hills South/Casa Grande Neighborhood Association (“GHSCGNA”) meeting a few months later after receiving a flyer stuck on my door. The new park was the big issue, along with speed bumps. In addition, new board members needed to be elected. Much to my surprise, I left the meeting as the newly elected President. This began a four year journey of my bureaucratic education. I had been on several boards and served as president of the Albuquerque Roadrunners Club for a number of years, but I really wasn’t prepared for this task. The city moves at a snails pace if you don’t have any connections. It took over a year to get the bridge installed over the arroyo. Then the park development started. There were several versions of the park drawings and we had lots of input from our board and association members. I talked with David Flores, at Park Development, and asked him if we couldn’t get all concerned parties at one neighborhood association meeting. Greg Payne, our City Councilor and Jimmie Hall, our State Representative, along with several city department representatives and 60 or more neighbors, all showed up. Greg and Jimmie had secured funding and suddenly the park was on its way. Greg’s term was up and our new councilor Craig Loy, came on board. Craig was a great help and anything we needed to get done he was right there to help us along.
The construction began. Most of our neighbors were excited to see the park going in, some not so much. They were worried about all sorts of park activity and we had some heated discussions at those meetings. Let’s just say that Roberts Rules of Order came in handy on several occasions.
We now had a park, with a path! I have been a runner for 29 years and could now go right out my back gate and run.
In the spring of 1988 the YMCA had put on a fun run that went around our neighborhood. I still have the ribbon. Stephanie Brown, Executive Director of the Mountainside YMCA was a GHSCGNA board member at the time so it seemed to be a great idea to put on a neighborhood 5-K run/walk and donate the proceeds to the “Y”. I talked the board into letting me direct the run. One of the board members insisted that it be called the “First Annual” Foothills 5-k Run. That first year we had 65 participants, more than 20 were from the neighborhood, the others were friends whom I asked to come and help. We ended up making $68 for the YMCA. The next year, Brian McKeever from Red Robin restaurant, also our Vice President, offered to donate the t-shirts which helped to make over $600 for the YMCA. Last year we had over 100 participants, including Linda Manning, our current President, over 30 from the neighborhood, and with help from Jimmie Hall and a donation from a friend of mine, we made over $1600 for the YMCA’s Invest in Youth program!
This year will be the “5th Annual Foothills 5-K run”. The park is doing fine. The YMCA has been totally remodeled. It also has a new fitness director, former Duke City Marathon race director “Doc” Dougherty. Doc will be helping, through the “Y”, to get more people involved and to get them in shape for the run.
So come on out and join us. It’s a great way to meet your neighbors, get a new t-shirt, and show pride in our neighborhood. If you don’t want to walk or run we could use your help with traffic control. A special thanks goes out to Garry, Ben, John, Harvey, Bill & Karen and Jimmie Hall.

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