Laurens, South Carolina – The Laurens Family YMCA is again hosting the 5K Reindeer Run at 9 a.m. this Saturday morning, and it should again include runners and walkers in all manner of Christmas attire.
“This is our 24th Reindeer Run,” said Emily Dasher, program director for the Laurens Family YMCA. “So far we have close to 200 registered, but my goal this year is 250 and we’ll probably get close.”
The starting and ending location will be on West Main Street in the area between the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office and Truist Bank, which is located at 201 West Main St.
One change this year is a specific start time for each runner.
“Normally, everyone has the same start time, like with a shotgun start, but for more precise times the timing company will have everyone’s specific start time based on when they cross the line to actually begin the run,” Dasher said. “Runners will still go first and the walkers and One Mile Fun Run participants will follow the runners.”
The Reindeer Run has been a staple in Laurens for all these years and has grown in success, Dasher said, and as always, the proceeds go toward the Laurens Family YMCA’s youth scholarship fund
South Carolina’s unpredictable December weather has made for a couple of previous Reindeer Runs with temperatures in the 20s, while others have been balmy. Repeat runners will remember the cold temperatures combined with rain in 2018 when about 80 dedicated runners braved the conditions.
This weekend’s race weather looks to be in between the extremes, however, with forecasts calling for mostly cloudy skies and race time temperatures in the upper 40s, which can be perfect for 5K runners, Dasher said.
“We get a lot of out-of-town runners and a lot of times they like to wait and see what the weather is looking like before they come down,” Dasher said. “The registration tent opens at 8 a.m. Saturday and so we usually get a lot that morning.”
For those who still want to participate, it’s too late for a guaranteed T-shirt but it’s not too late to register for the 5K or the one mile Fun Run.
The cost is $35 for the 5K and $5 for the Fun Run.
There is a link online by scrolling down on the local Laurens YMCA website, www.lakelandsymca.org/programs, and anyone can go by this week and register at the YMCA at 410 Anderson Drive. It’s open today and tomorrow from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday 5 a.m. to 6 p.m.
This story originally ran Page 7 of the Wednesday, Dec. 6 issue of The Laurens County Advertiser.