Tara Murray, Running: Summer race season heating up

Summer brings long days, giving runners plenty of opportunities to train, and a wide variety of racing opportunities.

Runners who also swim and bike can take on a trio of triathlons. The first is a super sprint, sponsored by the YMCA of Centre County, on June 14 at Governors Park in Bellefonte. The short distances —200-yard pool swim, 6.5-mile bike, and 2-mile run—are perfect for novices and a good speed challenge for more experienced triathletes. Participants can also complete a sprint triathlon by registering for the double loop option. For more information and registration, see

Then on June 21, the Millheim Pool offers another beginner-friendly triathlon. Participats can choose between a sprint distance (300-yard pool swim, 15-mile bike, and 3-mile run) and the Millheim Mini, which is half the distance. There is also a Splash & Dash youth biathlon. More information is available


Finally, the Hartman Group Happy Valley Sprint Triathlon on July 6 at the Penn State Natatorium outdoor pool has a more challenging sprint course consisting of a 750-meter pool swim, 20K bike, and 5K run. The Happy Valley Sprint is also part of the YMCA of Centre County’s race series.

Those who just like to run can take on two of the area’s biggest races in July.

The Central PA Fourth Fest kicks off with a Firecracker 4K at 9 a.m. starting in front of the Bryce Jordan Center. The short distance makes the race kid-friendly, and those under 18 get a discounted registration. Registration is available on the Fourth Fest website at


Centre County’s oldest race has been closing out the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts for 37 years. Begun as a 10-mile race in 1976, the distance was shortened to a 10K in the late 1980s, and a 5K was added in 2005. The 10-miler was revived last year, and the Sue Crowe Memorial Arts Fest

races now include all three distances. All three races start near Medlar Field at Lubrano Park on July 13. The races start between 8:15 and 8:45 a.m. and are staggered so that runners finish together. At 11 a.m., kids races are held on the baseball field. More information about the history of the race and

this year’s events can be found on the Nittany Valley Running Club site at

Race results

Dan Craighead has been racking up wins in local races, but at the Linden Loop 5-miler on May 3 Matt Herring bested him and set a new course record of 27 minutes, 24 seconds. Craighead was second in 28:34. Anna Squicciarini won the women’s race in 40:14.

Kathryn Koetje-Simin of State College was first overall at the JDRF Type 1 Trot 5K on May 3 in 22:14. At the 13-mile Greenwood Furnace Trail Challenge on May 4, Jeff Smucker of Woodward was first in 1:53:08. Carol Dudukovich of Port Matilda led the women in 2:13:43.

The Beidelheimer Sidewinder 10K on May 10, part of the Tussey Teaser series, offers runners a different way to compete with age- and gender-graded results. Patrick Singletary, 48, of State College didn’t need any grading as he crossed the line first in 36:08 and was first in the graded results.

Craighead continued his winning ways at the End of the Mountain 5K in Lemont on May 17, completing the hilly course in 16:49. Liz Ladrido was the first woman in 24:23.

At the Black Moshannon 10K on May 24, Craighead got another win, but not without a fight from Matt Lipsey. The two battled through the course’s final downhill miles, with Craighead just edging Lipsey for the win. Both recorded times of 34:35. Tara Murray of Bellefonte led the women to finish in 45:12. Tom Cali, 59, of State College (40:22), received the Harry Lyons Award for being the first over-50 finisher.

In the 5K, Paul Grieve (17:18) won the men’s race and Tanya Rissmiller (21:45) took the women’s title.

In the area’s other big Memorial Day weekend race, the Boalsburg Memorial Day Run 3.8-miler, Craighead (20:53) scored yet another win and Jaimie Wright (26:05) was the first woman.

At the next-to-last Tussey Teaser, the Treaster Kettle Test Your Mettle 10.6-miler on June 1, Singletary again beat out much younger runners to take the win and best his own 5-year-old course record in 1:06:52. Lauren Philbrook was second overall and set a new women’s course record of 1:11:20.

Running calendar

• Faith Day Race 5K, 10K, and kids race, June 7, 8 a.m., Joshua House Community Center, 123 W. 10th St., Tyrone. $25 (kids race is free). Website:

• There’s No Place Like Home 5K, 10K, and Children’s Race, June 21, Medlar Field at Lubrano Park. Website:

• Tussey Teaser #5: Eager Seeger Half Marathon, June 22, 8:30 a.m., Alan Seeger Picnic Area. Free. Part of the Tussey Teasers series of races introducing runners to the mostly unpaved roads of the Tussey Mountainback 50 Mile Relay and Ultramarathon course in Rothrock State Forest. For more

information and details for the rest of the series, see

• Crack O’ Dawn 5K, June 28, 8 a.m., Lions Community Hall, Boalsburg. Registration: $18 by June 12 or $25 thereafter, includes pancake breakfast. Registration availabe at