The last two years have been tough weather-wise for participants in the annual Tim Kennard 10-Mile River Run and 5K Run-Walk.
Last year the weather was clear, but brutally cold, with temperatures around freezing. The year before that was worse, with snow and sleet falling on already icy roads.
For this Sunday’s event, however, runners, walkers and watchers can expect a spring-like day. Temperatures will be in the high 40s, at start time, but shoot up into the 50s by the time the longer race is concluded.
In 2016 — despite the cold — nearly 500 runners and walkers participated.
The 14th installment of the huge community event begins at 9 a.m. in the south parking lot of Salisbury University off Dogwood Drive. The race is held to raise money for various charities — this year it will be hospice, children’s camps and animals.
Held in honor of Tim Kennard, who died in 2004 from kidney cancer when he 48, and the father of a 7-year-old son, the annual event features a 10-mile road run and 5K road run.
This year, proceeds will go to Coastal Hospice, for pediatric cases and programs for grieving children who have lost a sibling or a parent to cancer.
Also benefitting will be Salisbury Horizons Student Enrichment Program, which provides support, education and hope to children from economically disadvantaged families; Coalition of Caring, for animals in need; and VSCOA PAWS, a program to train disabled, homeless veterans to train homeless rescue dogs to become service dogs.
All runs/walks begin and end at Salisbury University, with events winding through the surrounding neighborhoods and along the Wicomico River. Route maps are available at timkennard.org. Parking is available at Salisbury University in Lot B and the parking garage.
On the day before the River Run — Saturday — Rob’s Run for Kids for children ages 2-10 and other festivities will be held at EVO Public House, 201 E. Vine St. in Salisbury.
The opening ceremony will be at 8:30 a.m. and the 10-Mile River Run, 10-Mile two-person Relay and 5K will begin at 9.
At 9:05 a.m., the 5K Non-Competitive Walk will start. It will allow baby joggers and well-behaved canines and begin five minutes after the competitive events.
Events will begin and end at Salisbury University. Runners will wind through neighborhoods surrounding the university and Wicomico River. Those in the relay will take the same course. Cash awards will be given.
Residents who live along the running course are urged to venture outside and cheer on the runners as they pass by.
Afterward, there will be a post-race party and awards ceremony.
The Tim Kennard River Run is hosted by The city of Salisbury. Major sponsors include Comcast, Vernon Powell Shoes, Geiger Pump & Equipment, and Robinson’s Jewelry & Clock Store.
More information and registration is available at timkennard.org.