Sign In or Register here


AROUND TOWN/ A Last Running Gasp of Summer

Gale Curcio
By Gale Curcio
Posted on Sep 08,2010
Filed Under Local Sports, News , Community,
Share  


 

Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Race organizer Steve Nearman, NBC 4's Doreen Gentzler andBurke & Herbert Bank Chair Hunt Burke share a lighter moment last week while prepping for the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Race organizer Steve Nearman, NBC 4's Doreen Gentzler and
Burke & Herbert Bank Chair Hunt Burke share a lighter moment
last week while prepping for the Woodrow Wilson Bridge
Half Marathon.

ALEXANDRIA, VA. – About a year ago, Steve Nearman was taking a boat ride under the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge when he had a vision.

“How cool it would be to have a race across the bridge,” he thought.

 

Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Runners return to Burke & Herbert Bank after the training run that was held last week in preparation for the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon
Photo by Gale Curcio
Runners return to Burke & Herbert Bank after
the training run that was held last week in
preparation for the Woodrow Wilson Bridge
Half Marathon

No stranger to organizing and covering races, he started to investigate. When he found that he couldn’t get the bridge closed for a race, he was thinking about abandoning the idea.

However, when the new walkway was completed, some fellow runners ran across the bridge and suggested that a run would not only be doable, but very exciting to run alongside the traffic on the bridge.

And so the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon, also known as "Cross the Potomac to an Awakening," was born.

With the race scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 19, more than 3,500 racers have registered and Nearman said that they will cap the registration at 4,000 runners.
 
The race will go up the George Washington Parkway from Mount Vernon, Virginia, cross the Woodrow Wilson Bridge and end at National Harbor, Maryland.

A description of the run reads, "No matter why you run, imagine yourself at the starting line at the majestic Mount Vernon estate of our first President George Washington, then traversing up the wide scenic road – not bicycle path - of the national park named in his honor, the beautiful George Washington Memorial Parkway.
 

 

Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Adriana Johnson displays one of the race shirts given out during the training run that was held last week in preparation for the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Adriana Johnson displays one of the race shirts
given out during the training run that was held
last week in preparation for the Woodrow
Wilson Bridge Half Marathon.

"Once on the Woodrow Wilson Bridge – the bicycle path, not the highway, sorry! - you must master the half-mile uphill challenge appropriately dubbed “The Rude Awakening,” en route to the new and inspiring resort and convention center known as National Harbor, the D.C. Metro area’s premier lifestyle destination.

‘The famous Awakening statue awaits your arrival at the finish line. Then we celebrate your success at our grand post-race party, complete with entertainment, food and a beer truck!’

Nearman has covered the running industry professional for 28 years, first with the Washington Post and then with The Washington Times and RunningUSA wire.
 
Nearing 50, Nearman continues to be a competitive master’s middle distance runner as well.
 
In 2007, Nearman, along with Toni Andrews of Burke & Herbert Bank, successfully organized the All-Alexandria Tipoff, a four-school boys and girl’s basketball tournament to dedicate the renovated T.C. Williams High School gymnasium to honor former NBA great and Alexandria native Earl Lloyd. He looks forward to another successful event with Andrews.

A training run was held this past weekend with NBC 4 anchor Doreen Gentzler, who is the race ambassador.
 

Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Steve Nearman and Kathy Darby give some details about the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Steve Nearman and Kathy Darby give some
details about the Woodrow Wilson Bridge
Half Marathon.

A couple dozen runners came out to prepare for the race, culminating in a breakfast at Burke & Herbert Bank.

E. Hunt Burke said how appropriate it was that the race was starting at Mount Vernon, given the fact that Burke & Herbert Bank held the money for the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association when they purchased the property so many years ago.
 
He said that they were honored to have Doreen Gentzler as "the face of the race" and that he and Toni Andrews presented Gentzler with flowers for her presentation.

Nearman said that over $30,000 will go to charities, including the Alice Ferguson Foundation. American Heart Association, Autism Speaks, Back on My Feet-DC. the Child & Family Network Centers and the Washington Area Women’s Foundation.

“It’s a world-class race – with all the trimmings,” he added.

Kathy Dalby, Pacers Events' Managing Partner, said, “We have everything ready for you – have a good time.”

Dalby has been instrumental in building the success of established races. Its marquee event, the George Washington Parkway Classic 10 Mile & 5K, began in 1984 as a 15K and quickly became a local favorite event. In 2006, Pacers Events acquired the event and quickly grew it from 2,500 registrants to a sell-out crowd of 7,000 participants.

Photo by Jeanne Theismann<br /> <br />Runners assemble for the training run that was held last week in preparation for the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon.
Photo by Jeanne Theismann
Runners assemble for the training run that
was held last week in preparation for the
Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon.

In addition to the usual Finish Line events, Stephanie Slaughter, acupuncturist with the Acupuncture Center of Northern Virginia will be on hand to do acupuncture on the runners.

“We will ask them to sit for 10-15 minutes and use needles to do the five points in each ear for revival,” said Slaughter. “It really helps to revive them.”

Slaughter, who works with Linda Lloyd, said that it is the first time that they have tried something like this, but are hoping to work with a couple hundred runners.

“This way people can experience acupuncture with doing the full intake,” said Slaughter. “We’ll target the main organ systems by nourishing each one of them.”

If You're Going...
 
Friday, September 17th 2010 – 12PM to 8PM
In Store Packet Pick-Up
Pacers of Alexandria
1301 King Street
Alexandria, VA     
 
Saturday, September 18th 2010 – 10AM – 5PM
The Westin Washington National Harbor
171 Waterfront Street
National Harbor, MD
 
 

Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Tina Leone welcomes Roger Parks, tournament chairman, to the stage during the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Tina Leone welcomes Roger Parks, tournament
chairman, to the stage during the Alexandria
Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.

VITALS...

Start Time: 7:30 a.m.
Distance: Half Marathon (13.1 miles)
Limit 4,000 starters – all entrants must be able to average at least 15 minutes per mile – total time 3:16
For more information, visit http://wilsonbridgehalf.com. Westin National Harbor will be the race headquarters as well as Saturday Expo/Packet Pickup; they are offering a $159 per-night rate for runners and their guests.

 Alexandria Chamber Holds Golf Classic

The Alexandria Chamber of Commerce held its 2010 Golf Classic & Awards Reception last week benefiting the Scholarship Fund of Alexandria. The event was held at Belle Haven Country Club and attracted over 123 golfers. The Scholarship Fund of Alexandria received a check for $2,000

Winners of the Longest Drive Contest were Chris Nielson and Dave Levine. Straightest Drive Contest winner was John McManus. Jerry Vernon won the Putting Contest and Kay Tyler and Zach Wiygul won the Closest to the Pin Contest.

Coming in first was the Virginia Commerce Bank team with a score of 60.
 
The American Advertising Distributors and Hilltop Golf teams were right behind them with scores of 61, placing second and third after a tiebreaker.

Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Tina Leone and Roger Parks with members of the WIYGUL team: Zach Wiygul, WD Wiygul, Oscar Wiygul, George Ball, Diego Ramirez and TJ Salinas at the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Tina Leone and Roger Parks with
members of the WIYGUL team: Zach
Wiygul, WD Wiygul, Oscar Wiygul, George
Ball, Diego Ramirez and TJ Salinas at the
Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf
Tournament.

The tournament fee included 18 holes of golf, a premium give-away item, prizes for longest and straightest drive, putting and closest to the pin, sleeve of balls, cart, snacks and beverages while on the course, and an awards reception.
 
Some of the golfers participated in a one-hour clinic with a pro on the driving range.

The awards reception featured an open bar, beef and salmon entree station, salad bar and assorted side items and dessert buffet.
 
During the auction, raffle prizes were awarded and contest winners were announced.

HOLE SPONSORS:
Hole 1: Mango Mike's Cool Caribbean Cafe
Hole 2: Potomac Riverboat Company
Hole 3: United Way presented by Frank Fannon
Hole 4: M&T Bank
Hole 5: Virginia Theological Seminary
Hole 6: Alexandria Toyota, Inc.
Hole 7: The Animal Welfare League of Alexandria presented by Andrew Palmieri and Nancy Appleby
Hole 8: Advantage SCI LLC
Hole 9:  Alexandria Chamber of Commerce
Hole 10: Mercedes Benz
Hole 11: Intelligent Office
Hole 12:  Friendship Veterans Fire Engine Association
Hole 13: Old Town Business & Professional Association
Hole 14: SunTrust Mortgage
Hole 15: The Center for Alexandria's Children
Hole 16: The Alexandria Scholarship Fund
Hole 17: Wiygul Automotive
Hole 18: Kelly, Anderson & Associates, Inc.
Driving Range: Krekeler Brower Wealth Advisors


Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Virginia Commerce Bank team placed first in the tournament at the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Virginia Commerce Bank team placed first
in the tournament at the Alexandria Chamber
of Commerce Golf Tournament.


Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Second place winners-American Advertising Distributors team at the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Second place winners-American Advertising
Distributors team at the Alexandria Chamber
of Commerce Golf Tournament.


Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Third place winners – Hilltop Golf team at the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Third place winners – Hilltop Golf team at the
Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf
Tournament.


Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Adron Krekeler awards umbrellas to participants in the Driving Range Clinic at the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Adron Krekeler awards umbrellas to participants
in the Driving Range Clinic at the Alexandria
Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.


Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Connie Dale took photos of all the teams at the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Connie Dale took photos of all the teams
at the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce
Golf Tournament.


Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Several raffle prizes were given away during the reception at the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Several raffle prizes were given away during
the reception at the Alexandria Chamber of
Commerce Golf Tournament.


Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Eric Jean and Tom Lavery prepare the team photos for distribution at the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Eric Jean and Tom Lavery prepare the team
photos for distribution at the Alexandria Chamber
of Commerce Golf Tournament.




Loading Loading..


Shopping and Services Guide


Exclusive deals from the best locals!

Browse our highlighted partners
Spas, retailers, restaurants and…
so much more.