Returning for the fourth year with a new twist is The Amazing Race of Highland County that will take place Saturday, Aug. 13 at Liberty Park in Hillsboro.
“We’re adding a kids race this year. It seems like all the kids, at the end of the race, they want to run through the finish line with the mud crawl and water hazard and everything, so we’re going to let them do it at no charge just for fun,” said Dr. DJ Jamieson, the race organizer. “We’ll let them try it out and see how it goes.”
The regular race is a seven to eight kilometer, two-person team, run/walk event with 20 roadblocks, or challenges, along the way. Participants must be 12 years or older.
The kids race will be for children 11 and younger. Jamieson said they’ll run 100 or 200 hundred yards and through a couple challenges, including the ones at the finish line, probably around 1:30 or 2 p.m. during the lag between the end of the race and when the final results are posted.
Jamieson and a committee originated the race in 2013 as a way to raise money for local non-profits and charities. He said that after this year race more than $50,000 will have been donated to those organizations.
“Being a local business owner, we get mailings and calls every week from non-profits who could use some help,” Jamieson said. “So this is my way, and the rest of the committee feels this way, too, of giving back and doing something fun for the community.”
This year, Jamieson said, 21 non-profit organizations, plus the Highland County YMCA, will each receive $500 for helping with the race.
The public is invited to come out and enjoy the day, too. While racers receive fruit and water when they finish, there are also concessions and a beer garden where refreshments can be purchased by anyone.
The race, which begins and ends at Liberty Park, starts at 10 a.m. and teams are sent off at one-minute intervals. Registration is $110 per team until July 31, then $120 per team through Aug. 11.
Pre-race packets can be picked up from noon to 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 11 and Friday, Aug. 12 at West Main Urgent Care, 231-A W. Main St., Hillsboro.
The non-profits – each of whom submitted applications and monitor one of the challenges – benefitting from this year’s race are: Alternatives to Violence Center, Altrusa of Highland County, Because He Lives Food Pantry, Big Brothers Big Sisters, FRS Help Me Grow, Greenfield Area Christian Center, Highland County Community Action, Highland County Dept. of Job & Family Services, Highland County Dog Pound Volunteer Program, Highland County Homeless Shelter, Highland County Special Olympics, Highland District Hospital Foundation, Hillsboro After Prom, Hillsboro Christian Academy, Hillsboro Emblem Club 277, Hillsboro Youth Football, Lynchburg-Clay Area Soccer Association, Lynchburg Historical Society, Rocky Fork Community Alliance, SATH/Kamp Dovetail, Support Our Troops of Highland County.
A year ago 115 teams participated and Jamieson said the hope this year is to top that mark.
“It’s a lot of fun, were excited to put it on, and we invite the public to come out and have fun with us,” Jamieson said.
For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the race’s Facebook page.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522 or on Twitter @13gillilandj.