On Sunday afternoon March 9th at the beautiful King's Gate country club in Port Charlotte, southwest Florida athletes gathered for the Zoomers Run & Triathlon Club's yearly awards ceremony. More than 50 members arrived, dressed in contrasting black & white attire each ready to share in the camaraderie and support that this group is so well known for.
The athletes were treated with breakfast food followed by sweets including cookies shaped like running shoes and a cake specially made for the occasion plus a cash bar. As everyone enjoyed lunch, a ten minute slideshow displayed the year in review. Not only did it include shots from the dozens of races that year but from Zoomers social activities and personal parties. As empty plates were collected, the proceedings began.
This ceremony is to award athletes for their performances in the 2013 Zoomer's Race Series. Runners accumulate points over the course of the year by competing in select races, their best six races are weighed against their peers. There are 10 Overall winners and 24 age group winners, all of which receive a symbol of recognition for their victories. Plus there is always a number of special awards.
This year the awards were emceed by Zoomer's President Dug Stetter and ceremony coordinator Tina Elkins. They handed out medals, took pictures and gave special mention to the essential people who make the series happen. Unique gifts were given to newcomers, ultra runners and those who go above and beyond the call of duty to volunteer their time and expertise.
2013 Overall Race Series Winners
Overall Female - Heather Butcher
Overall Male - Mark Steuve
Masters Female - Kathy Hendricks
Masters Male - George Chamberlain
Grandmaster Female - Marti Stetter
Grandmaster Male - Scott Varner
Senior Grandmaster Female - Buteena Pfeffer
Senior Grandmaster Male - John Bates
Veterans Female - Anne Marie Paradiso
Veterans Male - Frank Nicolosi
|Click to see larger image of all winners!|
A list of all the winners was placed at each person's seating area. It included thanks to long time contributors Bob and Carol Geyer for their "Time, Care and Love." It also thanked Ed and Joan Morgan for their "Exceptional skills of putting together the volunteers." Ed Gillen won the award of Best Race Director for his management of the 2nd Annual Howl at the Moon trail run.
Many people don't realize how much work and effort goes into creating and timing these races but the Zoomers do. They know that it is just as important to recognize those who staff the finish line as well as those who cross it. Zoomers is and always has been one big family, this yearly gathering was a reminder of that bond.
If you would like to be a part of the 2014 Race Series, it is not too late. Just visit the Zoomers website to see which upcoming races allow you to qualify for points. Who knows, maybe next year's awards banquet list of winners will include you.