St Patrick’s Day 5K

2,000 residents hit the ground running for the city’s first-ever St. Patrick’s day 5K run. Members of the Rotary Club of Naperville Sunrise decided to plan the event as a healthy and fun way to bring the community together.

“I’m pretty excited about this,” said Trevor Morgan, the club’s president. “Any time you have a community event like this, people come out for it.”

People came out for it in full Irish attire, including Mayor Pradel and Councilman Robert Fieseler who both donned a green top hat. Participants say the luck of the Irish seemed to be with them, as the day’s weather made for a great run, despite some heavy winds.

“Thank God it wasn’t raining or snowing like they were saying it would in the beginning of the week,” said Frank Gromale of Naperville.

For many participants, the St. Patrick’s 5K was their first one.

“We’re not competitive. We weren’t looking to be in the 7-minute running group,” said Chicago resident Caroline Larson. “[It’s] just for something to say that we’re proud of and say that we did.”

“The cardiovascular benefit, being out in the fresh air and with all these Napervillians – that part’s wonderful,” said Naperville resident George Mamo. “The hitting the pavement for 3 miles – that part’s not so wonderful.”

Proceeds from the 3.1 mile race benefit the DuPage Senior Citizen Council’s Meals on Wheels program, which delivers hot meals meals to home-bound senior-citizens.

“Having civic organizations like the Sunrise Rotary come out and support causes that are local and right here at home is just absolutely phenomenal,” said Marylin Krolak, Executive Director for the DuPage Senior Citizens ouncil. “I’m just so tickled and speechless.”

Members of the Rotary Club are already planning an even bigger race for next year.

Kevin Machak reports.

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