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35th Annual Litchfield Hills Road Race coming fast.

POSTED June 05, 2011
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

LITCHFIELD: In one week from today, thousands of runners, families and fans of the event that is the Litchfield Hills Road Race, will roll into the town for another year of fun.

The 35th running of the Litchfield Hills Road Race will kick off on June 12 at 1:00 p.m., when the 1st Litchfield Artillery Regiment cannon sounds and 1300 souls go racing off into the Litchfield Hills.

As you would expect, the weather is supposed to warm up by next weekend.

Could you imagine the times that may have been run if the race were held today with temperatures in the low 70’s and not much humidity? I could finish sometime that day.

This three-day party starts taking shape mid-week as the Green in Litchfield is transformed into one big neighborhood backyard where friends and family will descend starting Friday night and ending late Sunday afternoon.

There is good food, drink and conversation galore for another year of family reunions.

On Saturday afternoon, a ceremony will take place that pays tribute to those who have left the LHRR family but are never forgotten, like race founder Joe Concannon.

A tour takes place each year at St Anthony’s Cemetery, where Concannon watches over the runners as they make their way up and down the dreaded “Gallows”.

It is the hill that kills the front of your legs on the way down early in the race and tests your lung capacity on the way up towards the end of the race.

Remembering those who helped create this tremendous event is such an important part of what this weekend is about and always will be.

During the day on Saturday, the Green will be alive with the Junior Woman’s Club of Litchfield Hills, “Gallery on the Green”, a craft fair with more than 100 artisans complete with the Lions Club food tent and other activities for kids of all ages.

At 10:00 a.m at the Plumb Hill track, the final leg of the KiDSMARATHON, led by world renowned Marathoner, Rod Dixon, will be completed.

This will mark the finish line for the young athletes who will be taking the last steps of a 26-mile journey towards a special goal of being fit and eating healthy.

Dixon has poured his heart and soul into this effort and his effects will be long lasting and postive for the kids who have taken this run with him.

Details on this years “elite” runners are still being finalized, as is normally the case each year.

While this race has become a staple in their running careers, these world class runners have busy schedules which have them deciding their next race just weeks before the LHRR.

Make no mistake though, this race is known throught the world running community and has been since it’s inception back in 1977 when Bill Rodgers took home the trophy in a time of 34:30.

The 2010 men’s race was won by the races only three-time winner, Julius Kiptoo while the woman’s race was won by Malika Mejdoub.

NOTES: Look for stories this week by standout writers, Rick Wilson, Dan Lovallo and John Torsiello along with day of the event coverage by a team of writers right here on your site for everthing LHRR.




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