WATERFORD—The 20th anniversary of the Waterford fall foliage 5k race and 1 mile fun run for the kids, is upon us.  We have been hosting this race in Waterford for the past 20 years, and loved every minute of the great community gathering. The good cause of raising money for scholarships has brought people together, either as participants, runners/walkers, or donors year after year. The race has seen great competitive runners, and those who participate for a pleasant fall run. Walkers are in the competition for prizes in their age groups as well. And the kids give it their all for their mile run, looking triumphant, and sometimes red faced from the effort, at the finish line. But the one thing counted on is that everyone has a great time and feels good about being there.

The original race back in 2000, was in memory of a long time Waterford resident, Margaret Sawyer, who ran the Boston Marathon when she was in her 70’s. Very much an inspiration for today’s runners. The next year, the race committee decided to make it a scholarship race for Waterford graduating seniors, in memory of Tony Waldeier, who had died the previous April. He taught for over 30 years at the Waterford Memorial School, and was much loved by the many students coming through his classroom. As of this year, over $70,000 has been given out to students furthering their education after high school in Tony’s name. Nothing could have pleased him more!

Race shirts, maple syrup, and tasty chili are the hallmarks of this race every year. And community spirit, from our sponsors, racers, and all involved are evident each year. The dedicated hard work of the race committee is one reason for the success each year, headed by Martha Eaton of Waterford. It started small, and has grown through the years, thanks to all the work put in by many volunteers and others.

The race is always run on the Sunday of Columbus Day weekend…this year on October 13, starting with the 1 mile fun run at 11:30 a.m.  Roads close before the race starts, and the race starts at the Waterford Common.

Race registration is still open, in advance, or online at www.waterfordfall5k.com, www.running4free.com, or www.active.com. Also, on the race day you can register in person at our registration table.

A booklet of the history of the race, with many photos,  is being published this year to celebrate this anniversary, and will be available sometime in early October. It will be in various places around the Oxford Hills, and of course on race day.  Come help make this the best race yet, and help us celebrate. Run, walk or watch and cheer on the runners and kids. We look forward to seeing you all again or for the first time!

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