Canada Day 2013 is imminent. Ahead of the parade, as usual, will be the 5th Street Mile. Organized by the Comox Valley Road Runners and sponsored by “the Joint” Physiotherapy and Sports Injury Centre, this run is an active start to a festive day.
The festivities this year are dedicated to the things that make us Canadian, and more than 200 participants are expected to participate in the one-mile journey down the main street of Courtenay.
The four-minute mile was officially broken in 1954 by British runner Roger Bannister in England and then repeated two months later at the Commonwealth Games in Vancouver. Our 5th Street Mile will never be an official mile for many reasons, mainly because it is downhill for most of its distance.
Still, running any mile in under four minutes is the business of Olympic hopefuls who, despite our metric system, still consider this a benchmark in their running career.
The Courtenay mile has been conquered three times in the past, by the same person, our local Olympian Cam Levins. Other athletes have come respectfully close to winning the new runners from Extreme Runners, but this is not a situation where close counts.
So, on Canada Day, starting at 10 a.m. at the corner of 5th and Woods, over 200 runners will line up to accept this traditional Courtenay challenge. Some will run for the gold, most will run or walk for the sheer fun of it.
All along the way will be a cheering crowd and at the end, credit for a job well done in the form of cookies and watermelon donated by Thrifty Foods and Quality Foods. There are also prizes for first, second and third in four age categories as well as many random finish prizes (you could win a prize for placing 87th!) generously donated by our downtown merchants. Everyone wins when everyone does their best. That’s “As Canadian as ….” we are!
Concerned parents should note that, contrary to the wording on the 5th Street Mile posters, strollers are welcome to participate in this event. However, for safety reasons, they will be started slightly behind the runners and asked not to race.
Registration is free and takes place at the corner of 5th and Woods. Registration opens at 9 a.m. and the event blasts off at 10 a.m. precisely. So put on your red and whites and join in the fun. You will only regret it if you don’t!
– Comox Valley Road Runners