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Thanks for making Race for the ROC a success

June 16, 2012
Salem News

To the editor:

The Race for the ROC, presented by Brightway Center Committee would like to thank all who contributed toward making the first 5K obstacle race in Salem a great success.

On June 9, 300 participants took part in an event that challenged them to jump over rows of hay barrel mounds, crawl through mud, go over and under staggered logs, run through mud, go in-and-out through 100 tires, crawl through 20-foot long tunnels, slide down the slip n' slide, and crawl under the tangled netting before reaching the finish.

The event benefited The ROC of Salem located on South Lundy Avenue. The ROC's mission is to build relationships with unchurched youth and lead them on the path to developing a relationship with Jesus Christ. The ROC is a non-profit 501(c)3 entity and is supported solely through donations from area individuals, churches, and businesses. The ROC of Salem is fortunate to be governed by a dedicated and passionate board of directors.

The overall men's and women's race winners were Jon Karamzin of Salem with a time of 19:58 and Caroline Packard of Pittsburgh with a time of 23:46.

We would like to make specific mention of Brightway Center for being the official event host. Brightway Center's dedicated support throughout the past year allowed the event to become a reality. Brightway Center is 175 acres of rural land located just a few miles south of Smithfield, Ohio on County Route 15.

The property was donated by the founder, Kara Bright, in order to ensure the completion of his lifelong dream to develop a Christian retreat community for anyone looking for a place of safety, encouragement, and Christ-like love. More information about Brightway Center can be found online at Thank you to George Spack for believing in The ROC of Salem and coming up with the idea to partner these two organizations for this event.

We would also like to acknowledge The Salem Parks Department for going beyond our expectations to help us create a successful event. Director Steve Faber and Foreman Jim Grimm, in particular, put in countless hours the past 12 months by creating additional trails for our course, mapping out the entire course, constructing all eight obstacles, helping us find supplies needed for the race, and meeting with us on numerous occasions to talk about how we can make this a fantastic event. We are fortunate to live in a community where the Park's Department's selfless individuals are constantly driven to better the parks in any way they can. Thank you to all other members of the park staff as well for your generous support throughout the past year.

Thank you to Jody Wright and Deb McCulloch for acting as unofficial co-directors throughout the past 12 months. They spent countless hours coordinating with sponsors to inform them about our race along with playing a major role in managing services needed for the race. This event could not have been possible without their devotion to help The ROC of Salem through our race.

We would like to thank the over 90 volunteers that generously devoted their time on race day to make everything well organized. Thank you to our many event sponsors including our generous gold sponsors: BOC Water Hydraulics, Inc., First Presbyterian Church of Salem, Fitch, Kendall, Cecil, Robinson & Barry Attorneys, Great Clips of Salem, Hunter Associates, Salem Elks Lodge #305, Summitville Tile, and TruCut Incorporated. We also would like to recognize our silver sponsors: Avalon RV Center, Inc., Barclay Machine, Robert and Deborah McCulloch, Hack, Steer & Company, Jody Wright, Lowry Supply, Specialty Fabrication, Inc., Stark Memorial, and Quaker City Castings. Thank you to our bronze sponsors: Brunk's RV, Butech Bliss, Byler, Wolfe, Lutsch & Kampfer CPA's Inc., Courtyard at Lexington, Yvonne Goll Photography, Herron Foods, Lyle Printing, Morris Financial Group, Quaker Manufacturing Corporation, Salem Community Hospital, and Smilewright Family Denistry. Thank you to our T-shirt sponsors: John and Marilyn Beebe, William and Patricia Butler, Church Budget, Consumers National Bank, Crabb Insurance, Donnell Ford, D.T. Moore and Company, Engineered Sales, Inc., Essex of Salem, Farmers National Bank, Fresh Mark, Ben and Susie Funderburg, Giant Eagle, Gordon Brothers, Sue Haberlein, Home Savings and Loan Company, Huntington Bank, J Herbert Construction, W. Thomas and Deborah James, Dr. Varun Kalra D.D.S., M.S., Lederle Auto Service, Paul and Penny Lippiatt, Lowry Tool, Ricky's English Pub, John and Elaine Omslaer, R.H. Homeworks Inc., Salem Chrysler Jeep Dodge, Salem Computer Center, Salem Tire, Salem Welding, Sanor Insurance, Inn at Christine Valley, Dr. Paul Shivers, D.D.S., Sterling House, Troll's Jewelry, UPS Store, V&V Appliance, Walgreens, Walmart, Bruce and Deb Williams, and Dr. Matthew R. Yerkey, D.D.S. Thank you to our helping hand sponsors: Busy Beaver, Homeworth Feed and Grain, Peter and Sherri Apicella, Ray and Brigitta Banner, Susan Beebe, Consign and Design, Holloway Insurance, Joseph and Barbara Houldin, Tom and Gerri Mikes, Kathleen and Charlie Presley, Quality Water Systems, Jean McCulloch, and Bonnie Sarginger.

Salem Area Websites created our exciting website and generously donated our event logo. Steven Rouse and Melissia Hartman are incredibly talented graphic designers that are able to generate top of the line professional websites.

We would like to thank the Salem Fire Department for filling our run through mud obstacle and for hosing off runners at the finish, EMT Ambulance for providing medics on site, Allied Waste Services for allowing us to use their dumpsters and trash receptacles, Cope's Farm Equipment for donating the use of two Gators for the event, and to The Salem Historical Society for allowing us to use the trolley to add a unique element of Salem's history. Thank you to Audrey Null and Tammy Peppel at the Salem Chamber of Commerce for providing advice and suggestions on where to look for numerous supplies for our event.

Thank you to Ted and Lori Yuhaniak and members of the Salem X-tra Mile Club for playing a big role by allowing us to use many of their supplies and also devoting a significant amount of time to help us out with their advice. Thank you to Service Director Ken Kenst for spending many hours helping us line up volunteers for the event and for also helping coordinate the necessary supplies needed for the event. A very grateful thank you goes out to Tim Bowser, Mickey and Dennis Weaver, Larry Cecil, Barb Clary, Eric Hamilton, Steve Steer, Jarrod Niederhiser, and Jodi Powers for playing active roles in giving significant amounts of time and energy to ensure a great event. We appreciated the understanding of all of the residents living on Sunset, Eastview, E. 15th Street and Westview for allowing the runners to pass through during the race.

Thanks to the efforts of all of these devoted individuals and groups, The ROC of Salem will be able to continue its mission well into the future. The town of Salem impressed all of us throughout the entire event planning process. The generosity of all of our sponsors, the willingness of volunteers to help, and the collective efforts by all involved cannot be matched in communities outside of our own. We hope the Race for the ROC, Presented by Brightway Center is able to continue as a successful event for years to come.

Mike McCulloch,

Event Director,

Race for the ROC, Presented by Brightway Center,



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