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Racing events new to West Fest schedule

Brand new to this year's West Fest Celebration on Saturday, Sept. 21 will be a 10K, 5K and a 2 Mile Run/Walk coordinated by Fargo Marathon founder and organizer Mark Knutson who is excited to be part of the action that will take place from 8 to 10 a.m. starting out on Sheyenne Street.

"There really will be something for everybody," Knutson stated. "The races start early in the morning so people can participate and still take in the parade. It will be a good way to warm up the route. I encourage everybody to be a part of it, even if you are not a runner. The 5K or 2 mile is perfect for walkers and it will be fun to be out there."

The lineup for the 10K will begin at 7:30 a.m. At 7:45 there will be announcements and the singing of the National Anthem followed by the 10K race start at 8 .m. The 5K and 2 mile run/walk race will begin at 8:15 a.m.

The events will all start on Sheyenne Street by Sandy's Donuts which was important to Knutson. "The neat thing about the route to me when I was asked to do this was that I wanted to include Sheyenne Street as the start and finish point because it is the heart and soul of West Fest.

Consequently, Knutson refers to the roadway as the Sheyenne Street Mile when mentioning the 2 mile run/walk, which means a trip down the roadway to 13th Avenue and back again equaling the two miles.

The 5K will travel Sheyenne and crossover 13th Avenue hitting the bike path traveling east and west before turning right on First Street to 17th Avenue and concluding by Sandy's.

The 10K will also start on Sheyenne and go to Thirteenth and then meander through Charleswood and over to Beaton Drive before heading back to Sheyenne Street and the finish line at Sandy's. "There are going to be some awesome little loops incorporated that will make for a really nice run," Knutson added.

Advance registration is preferred for the event by visiting the West Fest Run website

Registration fees are: for the two and five mile -- $25 before Sept. 14 and $30 after; for the 10K -- $35 before Sept. 14 and $40 after. Everyone who is pre-registered will receive an official West Fest Run t-shirt.

Those unable to register in advance can just show up the morning of the race and sign in at a designated spot by Westgo Square.

Knutson welcomes anyone thinking about being a part of the race to step up to the plate and give it a try. "I think if you are West Fargo resident this would be a great way to to kick off the parade. You don't have to be a runner. If you can walk a mile there and back we want you there."

Volunteers are still needed for the run. If you're interested, contact Go Far Events at (701) 238-1900.

More information about all 2013 West Fest activities will be previewed in the Sept. 18 West Fargo Pioneer and News in preparation and anticipation of the three-day event Sept. 19-21.