More than a hundred people participate in Firecracker Fun Run during July 4 holiday
Caleb Casey | Managing Editor
Grayling Recreation Authority (GRA) conducted its annual Firecracker 1-Mile Fun Run – an event that gives young runners, including GRA’s “Mighty Milers,” the opportunity to race in front of Fourth of July parade spectators – on Wednesday, July 4, raising thousands of dollars for the GRA cross country program.
Participants started in front of Huntington Bank on Michigan Avenue, ran or walked to the halfway point near the Grayling Elementary School, and then returned to the starting area to complete the looped course.
People were setting up to watch Grayling’s Fourth of July parade during the fun run, so the participants had a crowd watching and cheering. The race started at 10:45 a.m. and the parade was scheduled to start at 11 a.m.
Event organizers said 101 people participated this year, probably the most the Firecracker has ever had.
“We had really good participation. Everything went really well as far as the route,” said Justin Andre, Director of Operations for GRA.
The Firecracker Fun Run started several years ago as the final race for GRA’s youth cross country club, the “Grayling Mighty Milers.” In 2012, GRA opened the race to the public and turned it into a fundraiser for GRA’s middle school and high school cross country program. Grayling High School accepted cross country as a varsity sport two years ago, but GRA is still overseeing middle school cross country and its K-5 youth running program.
This year, like in years past, the Firecracker event featured a large number of young runners, including many Mighty Milers.
“We kind of do this to showcase the Mighty Milers. This is their showcase event,” Andre said.
GRA does not record times for the Firecracker Fun Run, so a list of results is not available.
Event organizers said the 2018 Firecracker raised approximately $2,200 for GRA’s youth running programs.