Youth can’t fight the funk |

Youth can’t fight the funk

The Youth WinterSports Alliance is offering Park City the opportunity to be funky first thing on labor Day, or as they say in Park City "Miners Day." Their fourth annual Funky 5K marathon on Sept. 4 is a kick off of sorts before the Running of the Balls and the Miner’s day parade.

"It’s good for those trying to get their the funk out in Park City," laughed YWSA executive director Shelley Gillwald.

The Youth WinterSports Alliance (YWSA), a non-profit umbrella organization that supports a variety of winter sport development programs, has designed the fundraiser to be more about having a wild, crazy time, than winning any race. In line with the wacky theme of Miners Day, race participants are encouraged to wear costumes and a special category for "centipede" teams of five people running in some sort of connected fashion to further the goal of fun and creativity.

This is the second year that the event has been invited to be a part of Miners Day festivities by the Park City Rotary. Gillwald says that the backing of such prominent members of the community and inclusion in the holiday activities has made a big difference in YWSA fundraising efforts.

"It gives us a whole new demographic to reach," Gillwald said.

The race was originally the brainchild of local runner, Peter Wood, who thought that a 5K event benefiting all programs in the alliance would be a great addition to the community.

This is also the first year that The Village on Main Street has been the presenting sponsor of the event. The Village is covering all of the race costs and entry fees, allowing all of the money raised to go directly to the youth sports programs.

"The Village on Main Street is pleased to sponsor the Miner’s Day Funky 5K benefiting the Youth WinterSports Alliance" Tony Thompson, chairman and CEO of Triple Net Properties that owns The Village, said in a prepared statement. "We believe in this thriving community and in supporting the efforts of the community as a whole."

The race will have 10 different competition categories, four of which are just youth divisions.

"We really want the kids to come out," Gillwald said.

The Rotary will award cash prizes of $100 dollars apiece to the "funkiest dude and chick" and a $250 to the most creative centipede team. Medals will be awarded to the top male and female finishers overall and in each category.

The race course will wrap around City Park past the Miners Day annual breakfast, then head up Poison Creek Trail, down Heber Avenue and up Park Avenue. The race winds around and ends in front of The Riverhorse on Main Street right before the parade.

The race begins at 9 a.m. in City Park and finishes on Park City’s Main Street. Race volunteers are also welcome.

The entry fee is $10 for kids 19 and younger and $15 for adults who register on or before Sept. 2. Registration forms and more information available at or at JANS on Park Avenue. One hundred percent of the proceeds benefit the junior athletes and programs of the Youth WinterSports Alliance and a race T-shirt is included. Call 901-3715 for more information.

The YWSA programs include: AXIS Freeride, Deer Valley Freestyle, FLY Freestyle, Kids Inc., National Sports Foundation, Park City Freestyle Ski Team, Park City Nordic Ski Team, Park City Ski Team, Park City Snowboard Team, Park City Speedskating Team, Summit Ski Team, Utah Skeleton and Bobsled Association and the Wasatch Luge Club

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