New Start/Finish for this year's Mushroom Cap 13.1
● By Richard Gaw
For the 700 runners who competed in each of the first two Mushroom Cap 13.1 half marathons in 2016 and 2017, the beginning and the end of their journeys was the track at Kennett Stadium, but as an equal amount of competitors line up for the start of this year's race on Nov. 3, they'll be doing so in another part of the town.
For the first time, the race will begin and end at the refurbished Kennett Creamery on Birch Street, beginning at 8:00 a.m. From there, it will wind its way along Walnut and South Union Streets, meander through the neighborhoods along Mulberry Street, Cedar Croft Road and Locust and Dean Streets, head north on Wollaston Road to Poplar Tree Road and then head south on Mill Road, and eventually, return to the Creamery.
The Mushroom Cap 13.1 will continue to offer runners the opportunity to participate in a relay, which will allow runners to share the distance of a half marathon. The lead runner will start the race and meet up with his or her partner at the Mill Road/Route 926 exchange point, and the second runner will conclude the race at the Creamery.
Those who are looking to compete in a smaller competition can enter the Mushroom Cap's Charity 1-mile event, beginning at 8:30 a.m., that will take runners and walkers alike along Birch, Broad, East South and South Walnut streets. All net proceeds from this all-ages race will be donated to Unite For Her, a local organization that assists breast cancer patients before, during and after therapy. Donations and registration can be made on-site.
The event will kick off at 6:45 with Sunrise Yoga, taught by teacher Kelly Kuder, and conclude with the Mushroom Cap Finish Line Festival, beginning at 9:00 a.m. at the Kennett Creamery, which will include a kids fun zone, live bands, food trucks and beer.
At the core of each race is the commitment to give back to the community. At its first grant-giving celebration, Run2Shine, Inc., the fundraising wing of the KSQ Mushroom Cap 13.1, donated a total of $16,000 to three beneficiaries: The Garage Community & Youth Center, Family Promise of Southern Chester County and The Genesis Employee Foundation, at its gala celebration held at the Marketplace at Kennett Square.
In 2017, a total of $17,000 was awarded in grants to Family Promise of Southern Chester County, the Kennett Education Foundation, The Garage Community & Youth Center, and The Weekly Fight.
“We get so busy performing each task related to the preparation of the race that we often overlook the fact that this race impacts so many lives in our community,” said Run2shine, Inc. co-founder Sarah Nurry, who began the KSQ Mushroom Cap 13.1 race with Karen DiMascola in 2016. “We're very fortunate to see that so many relationships between organization happen as a result of the race. While Karen and I firmly believe that being able to distribute funding to so many groups is important, that it's the synergy of partnerships, formed between people and organizations, that has come to define what the Mushroom Cap 13.1 is really all about.”
For complete information on the Mushroom Cap 13.1 half marathon, and to register, visit www.mushroomcaphalf.com.
To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, email firstname.lastname@example.org.