Big numbers expected for 35th Firecracker

By on June 27, 2012

By: TODD RUTH Review Sports Editor, Staff Writer

Runners from last year's Ephrata Firecracker Run show off their patriotism during the race. (Review File Photo)

If past experience is any indication, the 35th annual Ephrata Firecracker Run is expected to draw a big field for next Wednesday’s race.

Mid-week runs have generally attracted bigger fields in the past. And according to Race Director Dave Lloyd, that should indeed be the case this time around.

"We are anticipating a big turnout," Lloyd said Tuesday. "Since it’s in the middle of the week, we are anticipating as much as 800-plus runners."

One of the things we’ve done is we’ve had a new committee join us from the Rec Center Running Club, helping to organize and add new life and some new fundraising capabilities. It’s just added some new energy to the whole thing."

As for the race itself, for the third straight year they will use the course that includes a two-mile jaunt along Ephrata popular Linear Trail.

A year ago, former Manheim Township and Syracuse star Brad Miller, competing in his first Ephrata Firecracker Run, blew up the course as well as the competition on his way to the overall 2011 title. Miller crossed the finish line in a blistering 26:29.55, well ahead of 2010 champion and Clay resident Daryl Weaver, who took second with a time of 27:02.83.

On the women’s side, Elizabeth Smith of Hershey was also in cruise control on her way to her first Firecracker women’s title. Smith, who first competed in the Firecracker back in her high school days, seemed quite at home on the course, finishing in a winning time of 31:36.77 that placed her 18th overall. Smith finished almost two minutes ahead of Ephrata High School graduate Vanessa Andes, who finished second in 33:22.14.

A total of 601 runners crossed the finish line.

As for this year’s race, the run will kick off Ephrata’s Fourth of July celebration at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, with the two-mile Fun Run set to start immediately after the final runner crosses the finish line.

To pre-register for the event, pick up a form at the Ephrata Recreation Center, or download one at: Cost is $20 (includes Firecracker Run T-shirt), $10 (without T-shirt). All pre-registration must be postmarked on or before June 29.

You may also register prior to the run on race day, between 6:30 and 8 a.m. at War Memorial Field at a cost of $12.

Complete race results will be published in the July 11 edition of The Ephrata Review.

The following is the complete turn-by-turn rundown of this year’s course:

? Start: Oak Blvd. & Old Mill Rd.

? Old Mill Rd. to S. State St.

? Left onto S. State St.

? State St. to Spruce St.

? Right onto Spruce St.

? Spruce St. to Lincoln Ave.

? Right onto Lincoln Ave.

? Lincoln Ave. to E. Main St.

? Right onto E. Main St.

? E. Main St. to Rail-Trail

? Left onto Rail-Trail

? Rail Trail to Lemon St.

? Right onto Lemon St.

? Lemon St. to Pointview Ave.

? Left onto Pointview Ave.

? Pointview Ave. to Sycamore St.

? Right onto Sycamore St.

? Straight on Sycamore St. onto Old Mill Road

? Finish: War Memorial Field More RACE, page B-2

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