Well the spring racing season is in full bloom. The next PPTC event is the Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series starting Wednesday evening, May 27th and continuing every other Wednesday throughout the summer, ending on August 26th.

This series is one of our Club’s fine traditions: a local grass roots race, run on bare bones, but scored with an abundance of awards (always at Al’s discretion). We usually have from 60 to 100+ runners. The race is hand scored, starts at the Oriental Pavilion as soon as the Park is closed to vehicles (around 7:20) and by 8:20 the Awards ceremony is finished.

Additionally, we have started to use the series as a training or mentoring program for members interested in learning how to become race directors.
Last year Robert Matson and Jessica Kavoulakis mentored under the direction of Anne Perzeszty and me. They divided the number of races to direct between them. The outcome was that Jessica went on to successfully direct this year’s Cherry Tree! In addition she has written a training manual and both she and Robert are taking over the mentoring program series this year, while Anne and I shadow the process.

The good news is that veteran runner, Board member, and blogger extraodinaire, Michael Ring has thrown his hat into the ring (no pun intended) to be mentored. We look forward to his contributions of great experience, passion and commitment. Another addition to the race directing team is Veronica Antoine who brings her calm personality and training as emergency room nurse to the task. Additional good news is that the door is still open for more members to step up to the plate. I know of nowhere else where this kind of learning opportunity is available.

What I love most about being a Club member is having an opportunity to give back to the sport that has given me so much. And, in addition, we all get so much more back when we contribute to the Club’s efforts by volunteering. I’m very proud of the fact that roughly 50% of our members volunteer at some point during the year. This is an incredible number. Those of you who have volunteered know how great it feels. Now go out there and, in Club tradition, “put your arm around” another member, tell them how special it is and introduce them to Richard Weaver, our Volunteer Chairperson and ambassador of good will to the running world.

Not to be forgotten is our Club Picnic on Saturday June 27th! We have our traditional relay race, which technically is our only “track” event. We want this to be a family oriented event with fun and games for “youths,” so Richard Weaver is rounding up the families with their “youngins.” We also have live entertainment here. Last year Al Goldstein commented on Amy Duquette’s tap dancing exhibition, as the first time in Club history we have had “professional entertainment.” So, watch out Susan Boyle (of Britain Has Talent and YouTube fame), PPTC has talent – galore. The pressure is on. In case of rain we are covered under the Oriental Pavilion.
See you there!