Planning for 7th annual Kinston 8000:
Run for the River underway
Planning for the 7th annual Kinston 8000: Run for the River—set for March 31, 2012—is moving into high gear, according to Pride of Kinston’s Outdoor Events Team.
And this year, there will be more opportunities for runners and spectators to enjoy themselves.
- A “welcome to the race” party set for 6:00 pm Friday (Mar. 30, 2012) at Kinston’s Hampton Inn, 1382 Hwy. 258 South Kinston. Featuring a complimentary dinner, we brief our volunteers, say “thank you” to our sponsors, and welcome/register early bird runners.
- Registration for the One Mile Fun Run and the Kinston 8000 begins 7:00 am Saturday (Mar. 31, 2012) at the Neuseway Nature Center at Riverbank Road and Caswell Street, entering off NC 11/55 by the King Street bridge. All participants in the One Mile Fun Run receive a commemorative medal.
THEY'RE OFF--Runners participating in Pride of Kinston's 2011 Run for the River take off at full speed to conquer the 4.97 miles of the 8K race. Leading the pack in yellow jersey and tobaggan is Devin Swann of Raleigh, who ultimately finished the race in 24 minutes 56 seconds to earn a $500 first place prize. Swann set the course record in 2010 when he ran the distance through downtown, Mitchelltown ending at the local Farmers Market on the riverbank in 24 minutes flat.
- Runners participating in the One Mile Fun Run take off at 8:30 am and run the course within the Nature Center.
- Runners participating in the 8K race strike out at 9:00 am starting on NC 11/55 adjacent to the Rotary Dog Park and Skinner’s By Pass. The finish line for the 4.97 mile race is located on Herritage Street near the Farmer’s Market overlooking the Neuse River.
- Post-race nourishment for runners to be provided by Lenoir County Cooperative Extension.
- Post-race massages for runners will be provided by students enrolled in Lenoir Community College’s Therapeutic Massage curriculum, led by Dr. Steven Koehler.
- During a post-race ceremony, cash awards and medals will be distributed by Pride’s Outdoor Events Team, headed by Jeremy Jones of the little bank.
- An after-race street party, 11:00 am to 2:00 pm, gets going in front of the Mother Earth Brewing Company at North & Herritage Streets, being hosted by 8K runner Trent Mooring, president of Mother Earth.
The March 31 race—sponsored by Pride of Kinston in cooperation with Kinston-Lenoir Parks and Recreation and Kinston’s Public Safety Department—marks the 7th in a series which began in 2006. Pride’s marketing and promotions committee along with a special 24-member Outdoor Events Team and 100 or more community volunteers actually produce the race.
Over the first six years of the race, 1,100 runners have participated coming from Kinston and Lenoir County and from communities throughout the State and region.
Pride director Adrian King explains that a strategic objective of the downtown revitalization organization is to encourage people to visit downtown for dining, shopping and for fun events. The Run for the River, and the annual Sand in the Streets concert series, are two major activities sponsored by Pride to achieve its goals.
Prospective runners can sign up for the race on Pride’s website: www.downtownkinston.com/run.html. Registration fees—$15 for the Fun Run and $25.00 (or $30.00 day of the race)—are payable through Pay Pal.
2012 Sand in the Streets lineup announced
Pride has announced the line up for the 2012 Sand in the Streets concert series to be kicked off May 5, 2012 as part of the Chamber of Commerce’s huge BBQ Festival on the Neuse—May 3-5, 2012.
Sand in the Streets fans mob the stage during Pepsi Night as company executives toss T shirts and other souvenirs during the Four Knights Band concert July 14, 2011. Minges Bottling Group/Pepsi has been a season sponsor for the popular outdoor concert series for several years.
The Neuse riverbank festival attracts thousands every year. Pride supports the festival by sponsoring a concert to add to the festivities. The 2012 Pride band will be The Grass Cats.
Chris Hill, operations manager for the City of Kinston, and a fiddle player, is the only local member of the band which is based in the Research Triangle area of the State.
By tradition, the 2012 series will end with Band of Oz in August.
The line up follows:
|May 5 ||The Grass Cats/Festival on the Neuse
|May 10 ||The Monitors (with Dick Knight)
|May 24 ||Spare Change
|June 14 ||The Revelers
|June 28 ||Super Grit Cowboy Band
|July 4 ||Pizazz
|July 12 ||Suicide Blonde
|July 26 ||The Four Knights Band
|Aug. 9 ||Carolina Beach Band
|Aug. 23 ||Band of Oz
Downtown Clean Up Day Set April 28, 2012
Pride of Kinston's annual downtown Clean Up Day has been set for April 28, 2012. A project of Pride's Design Committee, the event, to be held in partnership this year with Kinston's Appearance Commission, has been conducted since 2006.
The aim is to illustrate the importance of a clean and attractive downtown, according to Pride director Adrian King. "An attractive and clean downtown is good for business as well as for aesthetics," he said. "It's a sign of how we feel about our hometown," he said.
Volunteers are invited to gather in Pearson Park at 9:00 am Saturday April 28 for assignments.
Downtown business owners and employees, student groups, civic organizations and scouting organizations are encouraged to volunteer for clean up day. A barbecue lunch will be provided for those participating in the clean up activities.
It was noted that many items carelessly thrown on the ground take a long time to decompose:
|Cigarette butts ||10-12 years
|Aluminum ||80-100 years
|Leather shoes ||25-40 years
|Plastic bags ||10-20 years
|Plastic coated cartons ||5 years
|Orange peels ||Up to 6 months
|Plastic containers ||50-80 years
|Paper containers ||2-5 months
Freedom Classic a Success
Baseball fans and players from the US Air Force and Naval Academies stood at attention as a massive 40/60 US flag was unflurled at the beginning of three games Feb. 25-26 during the Freedom Classic series at Kinston's Grainger Stadium. This marks the second year that the academies' ball teams have competed in Kinston under the leadership of Bill Ellis and the Kinston-Lenoir County Parks and Recreation department. It was reported that despite rain and cold winds, the Classic attracted some 4,000 people to Kinston for the games.
Chick-fil-A executive John McPhaul poses during the Feb. 25-26 Freedom Classic with his favorite beef mascots urging the baseball crowds to "eat mor chikin" at his restaurant at 4499 US 70 west of Kinston.