CANTON — Elizabeth Shluger, the CEO and executive director of the Hartford Marathon Foundation, thought that Collinsville would be a nice venue for a road race. The foundation hosts more than 30 races a year across Connecticut including its signature race – the Eversource Hartford Marathon and Half Marathon in October.
“It is such a great, unique community that has a nice buzz about it,” she said.
The foundation will begin hosting a race in Collinsville on May 1 called the Collinsville Classic 10K, a 6.2-mile race that will end in downtown Collinsville.
If you want to run, you should sign up soon. Shluger and foundation officials expect the race to be a sellout. Entries are capped at 800 and there are already more than 600 runners registered to run.
The race will begin at Lake Garda School in Burlington and end up on the Farmington River Trail, ending in Collinsville. The race begins at 9:30 a.m.
The Collinsville Classic 10K will be the third road race in town. The 25th annual Lobster Loop (3.1 miles or 5 kilometers) will be held in August, beginning and starting at the gazebo on the Town Green. The less formal O’Briley Road Race (3.1 miles) is slowly becoming a tradition on Thanksgiving morning, getting larger each year with about 100 runners last November.
The Collinsville Classic 10K is already the largest race in town. The largest field in the Lobster Loop was 570 runners in 1999.
Foundation organizers are working with the merchants in Collinsville to organize a post-race party for the runners, fans and visitors. “It will have a great local flavor,” Shluger said.
Runners will receive stainless steel reusable water bottles and race t-shirts will be made of recycled plastic water bottles. “We have a real emphasis on sustainability,” Shluger said. “We’re a very green organization.”
Volunteers that want to assist with the race can sign up at the Hartford Marathon Foundation website. Volunteers will get a shirt or some race clothing along with some food at the event.
The race will also be part of the Hartford Marathon Foundation’s new Spring Ahead 5K to 10K race series to help runners jump start their racing seasons. It begins with the O’Hartford 5K on March 20, continues with the Legends 4-mile race in Middletown on April 3 and ends with the 6.2 mile Collinsville Classic 10K.