Canada Army Run set to take place this weekend

With more than 25,000 participants from all over the country the Canada Army Run, featuring one of Canada’s biggest 5K races, is set to commence this Sunday, Sept. 20.

“You come here to run it, walk it or roll it. It’s something special sharing an event with over 25,000 participants. They come to understand what the military is all about and share the experience with friends, family and even strangers,” said Major Gus Garant Army Race Director.

The slogan: “No ordinary runners. No ordinary race.” sums up why this race is in a league of its own. The Army Run brings the flavour of the military with a cannon shot as a starting pistol and dog-tags as medals placed on the participants.

The race consists both of a 5K and half marathon. The route takes racers around key sites in the capitol region. The trail winds around the Parliament Building, Prime Minister’s residence, the Governor General’s residence, the War Museum and more.

The ill and injured are accommodated in the Army Run with a designated start time. In 2014, more than 200 ill and injured soldiers and athletes with disabilities walked ran or rolled both of the races. The number is expected to be greater this year.

“It’s a very emotional area of the event I think a lot of people come to see that and participate,” said Garant.

The weekend is about more than just the races. There are many activities to keep family members of all ages entertained. The event features a Sports Expo with over 35 exhibitors and a military display open to the public starting on Friday the 18th.  On Saturday, children can enjoy the BMO Kids Zone at Lisgar Park. Also on Saturday night will be the annual Pasta Dinner with guest speaker Dr. Steve Daniel.

This year’s Army Run introduces several new additions to the weekend. Though live entertainment has always been a part of the race, this year local and regional bands will be featured on the main stage located at the Marion Dewar Plaza.

Also new this year, participants will be able to access free digital photos taken of them during the race.

Team competitions have also been reintroduced this year.

“We felt that our participants deserve such prizes for joining us so were excited to see how successful it is and how many people download the race photos and share with their friends and family,” proclaimed Garant.

More than 14,000 participants alone are signed up for the 5K. According to Garant, 85 per cent of the racers are civilians that have a military connection.

“It just demonstrates that people come to our event to thank us to thank the men and women in uniform for what we do in Canada, and we do overseas for our country,” stated Garant.

Similar to previous years, proceeds from the race will be donated to Soldier On and the Military Families Fund. One hundred per cent of any donations made through fundraising are turned over to the organizations said Garant. The Army Run has been able to generate over $1.2 million over the years.

The Canada Army Run, acknowledged as one of the fastest growing races in Canada, was established in 2007. The first race had 7,000 participants.

The race not only attracts thousands of participants but also thousands of spectators. A number of roads and bridges will be closed on Sunday to accommodate the spectators.

To accommodate the race Queen Elizabeth Driveway will be closed between Somerset St. West and Laurier Ave. West from 8:30 a.m. Saturday to 3 p.m. Sunday. Portions of other roads in the downtown area will also be closed Sunday, Sept. 20 into the early afternoon. The roads include: Chaudiere Bridge, Alex Alexandra Bridge, Portage Bridge, Pretoria Bridge, Booth Street, Colonel By Drive, Dufferin Road, Elgin Street, George-Étienne Cartier Parkway, Hawthorne Avenue, MacKay Street, Mackenzie Avenue, Princess Avenue, Rideau Street, Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway, Sussex Drive, Wellington Street, Boulevard Alexandre-Taché, Rue Eddy, Rue de l’Hôtel de Ville, Rue Laurier, Rue Leduc, Promenade du Portage, Rue St. Jacques, Rue St. Rédempteur, and Rue Wellington.

Canadian Military Family Magazine will also be at the run. Make sure you stop by our booth.

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Mishall Rehman

Originally from Atlanta, GA, Mishall is a freelance journalist pursuing her passion for writing in her new homeland Canada. She currently lives in Trenton, ON with her husband.

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