They’re off as the one-mile fun run starts at the
Anna Maria Elementary Schcool Dolphin Dash.
HOLMES BEACH – Last weekend’s Dolphin Dash was the first one in a while where you couldn’t see your breath, which might account for the good turnout.
With the temperature in the upper 60s, the parking lot at Anna Maria Elementary School was busy with runners registering and preparing for the 5-K run, the first of two races.
This was the first year Rebecca Walter was not the organizer, due mainly to the fact her twin daughters are no longer at the school and are attending middle school.
Jesse Brisson is the new organizer, and Rebecca helped out by registering runners.
“I’m so proud the legacy continues,” she said. “Jesse did a great job.”
Walter said she was not running in this year’s 5K and one-mile races, joking that a lot of people thought she was a fast runner, and she did not want to dispel that belief.
“I have all four of my kids running,” she said. “It’s a good turnout thanks to the nice weather.”
Eight-year-old Katie Lyssy, a second-grade student of Mrs. Newhall at AME, was running her first race.
When asked if she thought she could win her age bracket, she said, “I’m going to try.”
Former teacher Lynn Drolet, who taught kindergarten at AME before taking a job at an educational book company in North Carolina, was back on the Island to watch the races.
“I love my job, but I miss the kids,” she said, noting that all the students she taught have moved on to middle and high school.
When the horn sounded for the start of the 5K race, the runners headed for Gulf Drive, which was blocked by Holmes Beach Police officers. They crossed the street and ran one block west then turned right through the back roads.
A short while later, Geremy Dewitt was the first male in. The Crystal River High School student said he came to the Island just to run the race. He is a serious runner.
“I run about eight miles per day,” he said.
Second place went to Michael Lamb, who works at the BeachHouse restaurant in Bradenton Beach.
Zachary Jones was next, the first youngster. The nine-year-old is a member of the Wakeland Runners Club.
Dominique Kohlenberger, of Longboat Key, was the first woman to finish. and Zachary Smith, 11, from Bradenton Christian School, was first in hisc class.
“I run every chance I get,” he said. “This was my first race.”
The one-mile Fun Run began at 9 a.m. This is a race that a lot of the AME students ran. Most were members of the runners club that race organizer Brisson leads every Wednesday before school. Anthony Monetti came in first, and Sarah Quattromani, 15, from Manatee High School, was the first lady runner to finish.