WICKED LOCAL — NORTH ANDOVER
The Thanksgiving Day Feaster Five Road Race is now open for registration at http://feasterfive.com with a new perk for runners – a long-sleeved hoodie T-shirt for the first 9,000 entrants.
The field is capped at 10,000 participants for the 30th edition of the road race on Nov. 23 in Andover. The Feaster Five will provide an apple pie from Table Talk to every finisher. Hosted by the Merrimack Valley Striders and managed by DMSE Sports, the Feaster Five’s 5-mile and 5K races will begin at 8:30 a.m. and the Kid’s Fun Run at 7:45 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day. All three races, which encourage walkers as well, begin near Brickstone Square on Main Street in Andover at the corner of routes 133 and 28. Proceeds from the race benefit the Merrimack Valley YMCA, Challenge Unlimited at Ironstone Farm, Bellesini Academy and the Merrimack Valley Striders.
The Feaster Walk to 5K program is available to anyone interested in training for the race with a group. Sponsored by MVS, the free program is taking place on every Sunday leading up to the race. The event is geared toward all ages, and all fitness levels are welcome. The training program begins at 8 a.m. on Sundays at the Feaster Five Race Start — the parking lot across from Woodworth Motors.
“We welcome anyone at any fitness level to become involved,” said Tom Licciardello, of the Merrimack Valley Striders. “It’s a great way to get your Sundays started and train for the event,” .
For those who intend to walk the course, the Feaster Five will continue a tradition started two years ago by providing a dedicated walker lane. IN 2016, about a third of the participants preferred the safety of the walker lane. The race’s Number Pickup & Expo will be held Nov. 20-21 will be held at the newly renovated Andover/North Andover YMCA. The 2017 Feaster Five will again feature bands and music along the course, digital clocks posted at each mile, and holiday refreshments following the race. In addition, every 50th runner in the 5K or 5-mile will receive a $25 gift certificate to Whirlaway Sports, and every child in the kid’s race will get a medal.
Returning as the presenting sponsor for 2017, Schneider Electric is a global specialist in energy management and automation with its North American headquarters in Andover.
“Schneider Electric has stepped up as a phenomenal financial supporter of the Feaster Five,” said Feaster Five Race Director Dave McGillivray of DMSE Sports. “This company is so dedicated to the health and wellness of its employees and many of them take part in the Feaster Five.”
Whirlaway Sports Center also is returning as a Gold Level sponsor. The newest Gold Sponsor Is Orange Theory Fitness. To become a sponsor, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The non-profit Merrimack Valley Striders was founded in 1979 to encourage and enhance running at all levels — from beginners to seasoned marathoners to members who run to improve their health. Though founded in the Merrimack Valley north of Boston, the running club has members from as far away as Florida and Arizona. For additional information, visit http://mvsruns.com.
Founded by Dave McGillivray in 1981, DMSE Sports is a sports event management firm, specializing in creating, marketing and producing mass participatory athletic events throughout the U.S. and abroad. In addition to the Feaster Five, DMSE manages the BAA Boston Marathon, the TD Beach to Beacon in Maine, the New Balance Falmouth Road Race on Cape Cod, the Finish at the 50 at Patriot Place, the Bellin Run in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk, among others. For more information, visit http://dmsesports.com.
To learn more about the race and to register, go to the race’s website at http://feasterfive.com. Once runners or walkers have registered, they can update their details via the http://myevents.active.com link on the website. Volunteers also are needed. Detailed information about how to sign up to help on race day can be found on the volunteer page at http://feasterfive.com/Volunteer or by emailing Crissy Licciardello at crissyL26@yahoo.com.