Kaweah Country Run returns for 2014


The fourth edition of a local event at Lake Kaweah gaining in popularity is back this year. All that’s lacking is a few more sign-ups. Fortunately, there’s still plenty of time to join the fun.

The cause: Chris Dudley Foundation— This year, the proceeds of the event will be donated to the Chris Dudley Foundation, headquartered in San Diego with a summer camp in Vernonia, Ore. For the past 20 years, the Foundation has helped hundreds of kids from all over the U.S. learn how to live a better life and manage a devastating chronic illness, Type 1 diabetes.

Our son, now 24, has benefited personally from the camp each year since he first was a camper at age 10 in 2000. For the past seven summers, he has worked as a counselor at the camp.

The week-long summer experience is a basketball camp and teaches the campers how to manage their disease while participating in extreme physical activity. That’s among Chris Dudley’s accomplishments, having been drafted out of Yale by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 1987. 

Dudley played 16 years and 886 games in the NBA all while dealing with Type 1 Diabetes. There is no cure for Type 1 diabetes, and it should not be confused with Type 2, which is lifestyle-related and can be reversed with proper diet and exercise.

After retiring from the NBA in 2003, the 6’11” center has devoted his life to the Chris Dudley Foundation, helping others cope with the insidious disease. In 2010, as a Republican candidate for governor in Oregon, Dudley lost a cliffhanger of an election to the incumbent Democrat.

Today, he makes his home in his native San Diego County and continues to help kids with diabetes lead healthy, active lives. 

Although registrants in the Kaweah Country run/walk will support the Chris Dudley Foundation with their entry fees, there will also be an opportunity for on-site, event-day donations to assist Darcie Pena of Three Rivers with her ongoing cancer battle. 

So come out on Saturday, Nov. 28, and do your part, win a prize like an overnight stay for two at Wuksachi Lodge, and enjoy all the fun of an active lifestyle.   

The course— The Kaweah Trails (upper 5K, lower 10K) couldn’t be in better shape. The recent rains and some handiwork by the equipment operators at the Army Corps of Engineers at Lake Kaweah have made for a hazard-free and extremely fast track. 

The races start with a modest descent down the asphalt ramp to mostly dirt courses. There’s nothing more comfortable on the feet than running or walking on packed earth. 

Come and experience your PR (personal record time) at either the 10K run or the 5K run or walk. Runners may also run both the 10K and the 5K as a combo. Wildlife sightings and scenic vistas are all included.

The perks— Each participant is guaranteed a goodie bag with raffle ticket, quality technical shirt, refreshments, entertainment, warming fires in the early morning, and a shot at the some big-time prizes. Prizes and a commemorative Kaweah Country Run insignia will be awarded to outstanding performers while other giveaways will be a part of the raffle.

Packet pick up— Pre-race packet pick-up is available at the Sole 2 Soul Sports in Visalia, (4241 Mooney Blvd.) on Friday, Nov. 28. 

General pick-up and race day registrations will be available the morning of the race, beginning at 7 a.m., in the Slick Rock Recreation Area parking lot near the starting line. 

The 10K race kicks off Saturday, Nov. 29, at 8 a.m. The 5Kers will hit the road at 9:30 a.m.

For more information or to sign up, log onto: kaweahcountryrun.com or call (559) 260-2909.

Investing in the run— Sponsors who are making this event possible include: Family Healthcare Network, Ben Weldon’s State Farm Insurance, Bank of the Sierra, In the Light Urns, Valley Oak Credit Union, Subway-Three Rivers, Sylvia Durando, Three Rivers Mercantile, Sierra Subs and Salads, and Wuksachi Lodge. 

For sponsorship information, call 260-2909.  

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