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The St Charles Children's Home 5K is a USATF Certified Course
To ensure the highest quality 5K race, The St. Charles Children's Home 5K has made sure that the course is a USATF Certified 5K course.
With more and more elite runners showing up to the St. Charles Children's Home 5K in Portsmouth, race director, Sister Mary Agnes needed to ensure that the 5k was exactly 3.1miles.
" We were able to find the USATF official course certifier for NH & a race course measurer, then had the course measured and mapped" says Sister Mary Agnes; Race Director. "While we know it is important for serious competitors to know that they run exactly 3.1 miles, we found that it was also important to those who run more for recreation" continues Sister Mary Agnes.
When a runner sees that a course is USATF Certified, they can run with confidence that it is not only the exact distance, but also runs a route that will be safe. "The USATF would never certify a race that they didn't believe is safe for runners." says Dave Abbett of Sub5Racing.com & one of the area's course measurers.
For any road running performance to be accepted as a record or be nationally ranked, it must be run on a USATF-certified course. In addition, the certification program is very important to the average road racer, as well as those of exceptional speed. Most runners like to compare performances run on different courses, and such comparisons are difficult if course distances are not reliable. No one can truly establish a personal best if the course distance is not accurate.
The certifications are good for 10 years and are mapped so that anyone who takes over the race later on, can easily find the start/ finish and mile markers.
To see the official certification and map of this 5K road race, please go to http://runningnuns.com/
The St. Charles Children's Home 5K was started in 1997 when the global insurance brokerage company Willis founded a 5k road race that St. Charles could call its very own. The race has grown by approximately one hundred runners annually, and has raised more than $155,000 for the Home. The St. Charles Children’s Home 5k has been a professional, well organized event from the beginning, and is supported by many local vendors who provide plenty of food and drink and an exciting array of raffle prizes. The race strives to attract serious runners, while at the same time providing a culture that is friendly to families, children and beginners. Our event stands out because participants have the unique opportunity to run with the children they are raising money to support. The children are recognized at the award ceremony of every race.
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The sisters have staffed the St. Charles Children’s Home in Rochester, NH, since 1968. The Children’s Home accepts children who have been removed from their family by court order and are under the protection of the Div. of Welfare. The grief and anger flowing from a troubled past tends to erupt in disruptive and sometimes violent behavior in these children.
In the spring of 1996, the sisters had a “family meeting” with the children to talk with them about healthy ways to release anger and negative emotions. The children came up with many ideas to vent anger in healthy ways. Soon Rose - one of our most aggressive girls—was going for daily hikes on a nearby trail with Sister Maximilian. By the end of the summer these daily hikes turned into daily runs. Meanwhile, the boys became jealous when they heard that Rose could run more than a mile without becoming tired. Since then, the sisters and children run 4 miles a day and participate in local 5k road races during the year.