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VHS track to host footrace fundraiser

VALLEY — The Valley High School track and field team will host the sixth annual Ram Run 5K and inaugural Ram Run 10K on Saturday, Feb. 24.

The 5K will begin at 8 a.m. EST, and the 10K will begin at 9:30 a.m.

Valley first-year track and field coach Ronnie Hall said the decision to add a 10K was made in hopes of increasing participation.

“Based on what I’ve been hearing from people in the community, I was told that we would probably get more participation in the Ram Run if we added a 10K,” he said. “I said, ‘Why not?’”

The event serves as a fundraiser for the Rams track and field program, which Hall said operates on a self-generated budget. The 2017 event, for instance, helped Valley cover meet entry fees and transportation to the state championships.

“Last year’s Ram Run pretty much paid for everything,” Hall said. “It’s crucial for us.”

Hall said participation in the event dropped slightly last year from 2016.

He estimates that about 50 runners participated.

This year, he’s hoping to have at least twice that number toe the starting line.

“I’ve already had confirmations on people that signed up, so we’re on our way to getting many participants,” Hall said.

The races, which start and end at the high school, will follow courses that wind along the Chattahoochee Valley Railroad Trail.

Registration costs $25 for the 5K, $30 for the 10K or $45 for both. The price includes a commemorative race T-shirt — guaranteed only to participants registered by Thursday, Feb. 15 — and a postrace breakfast consisting of pancakes, grilled sausage and orange juice.

Additional pancake breakfast tickets for non-race participants will be available for $5 at the door.

“That’s the same thing they did last year, same thing they did the year before, so we’re going to continue that tradition,” Hall said of the breakfast selection.

Race registration forms can be obtained at the high school or by emailing Hall at hallre@chambersk12.org.

Hall said forms should be submitted as quickly as possible. Once completed, they can be mailed to or dropped off at the high school, which is located at 501 U.S. Highway 29.

Race day registration also will be available beginning at 7 a.m. on Feb. 24. Then, the cost will be $30 for either race. Prizes will be awarded to the top three finishers in each age group.

Hall said the funds raised from the event will help provide him the financial resources to begin fulfilling his vision for the Valley track and field program.

Hall, who worked as a volunteer assistant coach last year, wants to restore the Rams’ rich running, jumping and throwing tradition.

“We want to be one of the premier teams in the county, and I want people to notice us when we step out on the track,” Hall said. “I want everyone to know, when they see us coming, that we have a top-notch program.”

Valley recently started practicing for the 2018 season. The team’s first meet will be March 3.

“So far we’re looking pretty good,” Hall said. “The enthusiasm is high, and everybody seems to be very excited.”