By Ron Rop
The 31st running of the Mercy Health Seaway Run is set for Saturday morning and expected to draw a record number of runners and walkers.
The race actually includes four separate races. The wheelchair race begins at 8 a.m., followed by the 5K run, the 15K run and the 5K walk. All races begin in front of the Muskegon Family YMCA, 900 W. Western.
Runners who wish to get in on last-minute registration can do so Friday from 2-8 p.m. at the YMCA. There will be no registration on the morning of the race. That is a first for the annual race.
Organizers are expecting a record turnout that could surpass the 2,500 mark.
Defending champions in the 5K race include Fremont’s Erik Westbrook (16:06) in the male division and Jeanne Dykman, from Montague, in the female division. Dykman’s time was 18:05. In the male masters division, Rob Moore, from Groveport, Ohio, won it in 17:34 and Spring Lake’s Cindy Kikkert-Penning won in 21:17.
In the 15K race, Muskegon’s Tim Woodcock was the male winner in 53:20 while Jessica Graf, from Holton, won the female division in 57:32. The male masters winner was Holland’s Randy VanLoo in 58:59 and Allegan’s Darla Brown was the female masters winner in 1:13.00.
The 5K course is mostly a flat loop through the neighborhoods near the YMCA. The 15K course takes runners to Lake Michigan before looping back to the YMCA. The Walk for Fun will follow the Lakeshore Trail.
Tonight, the annual Health Expo will take place at the YMCA. A spaghetti dinner is from 4-7 p.m. The dinner is free for runners, Family and friends can purchase a dinner.