Runners to compete in 2nd annual Mile Down the Pike on May 26

Peter Oviatt, 53, of Easton Hampton, crosses the finish line during the M&T Bank Mile Down the Pike, winning the first race, which was held last year.

MONROE, CT — Runners will lace up their sneakers to compete in the second annual M&T Bank Mile Down the Pike, to be held right before the annual Memorial Day Parade on Sunday, May 26.

“I thought it would be a neat thing to do, to run down the parade course with everyone cheering you on. It’s all downhill so it makes for a really fast mile,” said Dr. Paul Moyse, one of the original members of the Sprint for Monroe committee, who came up with the idea for the new race last year.

Organized by the Monroe Memorial Day Parade Committee, the event begins at Firemen’s Field, where registered runners can check in beginning at 11 a.m. on May 26.

At 12:15 p.m., runners will gather for race instructions. Dr. Moyse will bring them out to the start line on Route 111. The race beings at 12:30 p.m. Participants will run down Monroe Turnpike, heading toward the finish line, just before the intersection of Route 111 and Elm Street.

Amy Primorac, left, and Dr. Paul Moyse are organizers of the M&T Bank Mile Down the Pike road race, an idea first conceived by Dr. Moyse.

“Everyone who did the race last year loved the event,” said Amy Primorac, the previous director of the Sprint for Monroe, who is an organizer of the Mile Down the Pike. “They loved the support they got from the crowd and felt super energized.”

Last year’s winner, Peter Oviatt of East Hampton, ran the race in just under five minutes.

T-shirts will be given to the first 150 participants who register. Age group awards will be given to the first, second and third place finishers in each division. Snacks and water will be available post race for all participants.

Those who register should be able to complete a mile in 15 minutes or less. Early bird pricing is available until this Monday, May 20. Registration is available until about 30 minutes before the race begins online.

Proceeds from the event will fund the town and American Legion Post 176’s annual effort to place flags on the gravesites of all Monroe’s military veterans buried in cemeteries throughout the town. Any money left over will benefit other veterans’ causes.

The M&T Bank Mile Down the Pike, named after Monroe Turnpike and the fact that runners complete a mile downhill on the “pike”, was introduced last year as part of the Monroe Bicentennial celebrations.

The success of the event encouraged organizers Dr. Moyse and Primorac to continue the event as part of the Monroe Memorial Day Parade Committee. Marybeth Zarifian, also a former member of the Sprint for Monroe committee, is one of the organizers of this event.

M&T Bank is the title sponsor of the event for the second year running. The bank supports the race through financial donations and volunteers on the day of the race.

“We are hoping to have even more people run this fun race this year,” Dr. Moyse said. “It will be a lot of fun.”

To register or learn more about the 2nd Annual Mile Down the Pike, click here.

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