It's been 18 years since former RACC presidents Dr. Richard Kratz and Dr. Gust Zogas conceived the idea of the RACC Run. The first event was held with just a handful of people running through the campus.
Over time, the race has evolved, thanks in large part to Ben Rosenberger, the Director of Financial Aid and Registrar at RACC. "In 2004, the school was going to drop the race because they had been losing money on it and someone needed to take it over," Rosenberger said. "David Richards, who worked in our IT department, approached me and asked if I would help.
"I told him if he focused on running the race, I would work on getting sponsorships so we'd at least break even," he added.
Under their watchful eye, the race grew into a well-known Berks County event that draws some of the best local runners – at least when the weather is nice.
"A sunny day can be the difference between 100 runners and 300 runners," said Rosenberger. "A lot of runners don't make the decision to run until they wake up that morning and see the sun shining. So, we moved it back this year and I'm keeping my fingers crossed."
Another key factor in their growth has been the increased support from the RACC community, including dedicated staff members and student volunteers.
Rosenberger added that this event is not just for adult runners. It is a true family event that includes a ½ mile Kids Fun Run. "It's so cool to see the kids come across the finish line and get that medal. It's something that could light a passion for the future," he said."
"As the race continues to grow, Rosenberger is hoping they can eventually raise $10,000 which would create an endowed scholarship for RACC students. "Almost every race has a cause and this scholarship would be a great example of community service," Rosenberger said. "This event gets RACC's name out there and promotes fitness and being healthy since a mind without a body is useless."
"An exciting addition to the RACC Race this year is the launch of Girls on the Run, which is being championed by RACC alum and employee Kim Rivera. For more details on the 19th Annual RACC Run/Walk and Kids Fun Run, visit RACC's website.