Mills to host annual 5K race


Staff Writer

Friday, June 1, 2018

Running swag, breakfast food trucks, live music, money raised toward a good cause — and, of course, beer, will all be part of this weekend’s Rocky Mount Mills 5K, the third annual iteration of the event, which will begin early Saturday morning.

As it stands right now, about 97 percent of race spots are filled, according to the event’s website, mill5k.com.

In all, about 460 runners have signed up, the largest in its three-year history, along with 32 “supporters,” who are “the people that come out for the swag and not the running,” as race co-director Michael Forrester said, who organizes the event with his daughter, Caroline, plus 40 volunteers.

Forrester said as of Thursday night there were about 20 spots still left, though participants must register before Saturday morning. But for those less interested in running and more interested in food, music and beer, it’s an event open to the public — though people are encouraged not to arrive until after 10 a.m. to avoid congested and roped-off streets.

Like last year, a number of food trucks will be on hand. All will open at 9 a.m., shortly after the 8:30 a.m. start of the race.

But this year, there will be meal time appropriate breakfast food: Hot Chix Hotcakes & Chicken, with taco-themed options with pancakes instead serving as the tortilla; Smashed Waffles; Wandering Moose, a popular Raleigh truck; and Jam Ice Cream. All trucks will be open from 9 a.m. until noon.

As was the case the first two years that Forrester and his daughter organized the run, its larger goal will be to benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. All proceeds will be donated there, as were the more than $30,000 raised the past two years, thanks in part to donations, swag purchases and sponsors.

The personal connection for the Forresters to the disease is with family friend Sicily Russo, an 11-year-old girl who has the disease. Her father, Matty Russo, will be playing live music throughout the morning with his band, Matty Begs. Sicily, along with her two sisters, will be singing the national anthem to start the race.