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SoJo Summerfest race takes first place in fun

Jul 06, 2017 03:28PM ● Published by Keyra Kristoffersen

And they’re off! Runners start their morning off with a 5K race. (Keyra Kristoffersen/City Journals)

Gallery: SOJO Run [2 Images] Click any image to expand.

Every year, South Jordan includes a 5K and Kid’s Fun Run 1 mile race to kick off a full day of activities during the SoJo Summerfest event. The 2017 event had racers lining up at Towne Center Drive parking lot behind the City Hall building at 7 a.m., ready and rearing to go.

“I’ve done it two years in a row,” said Teresa Brinkman, who has been running marathons and races for years. “It’s fun. It’s got kind of a small-town feel. I’m down to 5ks, and I’m happy with that.”

Brinkman said it’s all about setting goals and credits her husband as a great support. Plus, she likes the T-shirts.

Mike Carn has already run several of the South Jordan 5K races with his daughter Alyssa Carn, but this was their first Summerfest run, and they’re both in it for the health and fun.

“We’re not runners; we just come out and have fun,” he said. “We try to do it without stopping—that’s the main thing. It’s kind of motivation to just not stop, no matter how fast we do it.”

Wendy Memmott was looking to get in better health and felt like running was how she was going to do it.

“I did it last year, and it was good,” she said. “Good course, and it’s fun. And it’s in South Jordan, so support the local, and just get out there and see if I can do it.”

Cara and Gavin Mathis recently moved to Daybreak from Washington, D.C., where they ran in 5k races all the time.

“It was always a really fun way to get involved in the community,” said Cara Mathis. “This seems like a really great community event. We’ll keep involving ourselves.”

The Mathises also had their young son tagging along in a stroller, calling him an old pro at racing and hoping to instill good, healthy habits as a family.

“It’s a family thing to do, too,” Gavin Mathis said. “We exercise as a family.”

Jennifer Horne also came out to run with her son, William, who first started running with his sister in the Kids Run Utah programs at the South Jordan Fitness & Aquatic Center in 2016.

“I really like the South Jordan race series,” Horne said. “I raced a lot as a kid, so being there with them, I thought that sounds like fun. I remember how fun it is, and we started doing races together since then.”

Runners for both the 5K and the Kid’s Fun Run went out on a loop through the surrounding neighborhood in order to end up back at the same spot to finish, with their times projected on a clock and inspirational music calling them back.

The first to cross the finish line in the 5K was Teague Porter, who runs cross country at Bingham High School.

“I feel good,” he said after the race. “I feel really good, tired. I’ve been running for a couple of years. I saw one of my friends at the front, so I wasn’t going to let him beat me.”

Participants of both races were handed a Summerfest medal upon completing the race and food and prizes from sponsors awarded by event staff.

“This is probably our biggest event for the year, apart from the marathon,” said Mikayla Carrigan, from the recreation center. “It’s nice to be out here. Summerfest is fun.”

Brad Vaske, program coordinator for the city of South Jordan, took over the Summerfest races last year and was happy with the turnout and that there were so many new runners this year.

“It’s going to be good for the city, too,” he said. “We’re getting a lot of people drawing in from a lot of the other communities.”

One of those from other communities is John Cahill from Salt Lake City, who goes around to anywhere there are races and completes a 5k every Saturday. He does all of this wearing a shirt that says “93 and still running.”

“I’m not a runner anymore; I’m a freak,” said Cahill, who started running at age 62, and after getting his heart fixed at 63, said he ran better. “I just want to show up and be there. I have two goals for every race. One’s to get to the start line on time, and the other’s to finish before dark.”

Cahill urges others that it’s never too late to start running, to not stop and to get out there because it’s worth it.

“It’s cheap,” he said. “A pair of shoes will cost you $50. To run this race costs $25, and you get a shirt.”

The next in the South Jordan Race Series is the midnight SoJo Glow Run on July 14 at the Mulligan’s Golf and Games, which will offer a 5k and 10k along the Jordan River Trail, and the Super Hero 5K Kid’s Run Aug. 11.

For information about upcoming race events, visit: www.sjc.utah.gov/upcoming-events.
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