Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023 |
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Bill Buley / The Garden Island
Mikaela Alne looks back at her sister Mariah Alne as they finish the tire obstacle on Saturday during the Ohana Fit Fest in Kilauea.
Runners follow the Wai Koa Loop Trail in the Ohana Fit Fest obstacle course trail run Saturday in Kilauea.
Jennifer Luna, right, and Vanessa Luna of Princeville pass over a muddy area of the Wai Koa Loop Trail on Saturday during the Ohana Fit Fest in Kilauea.
Lars Neuman and son Gunnar Neuman, 2, crawl under an obstacle on the Wai Koa Loop Trail in the annual Ohana Fit Fest course on Saturday in Kilauea.
Brandi Keeney of Kilauea climbs over one of the obstacles in the Ohana Fit Fest 5K run on Saturday in Kilauea.
Celine Abell of Kilauea runs through the Wai Koa Loop Trail during the Ohaha Fit Fest 5K run on Saturday in Kilauea.
Sisters Mariah Alne, right, and Mikaela Alne of Princeville solve a combination lock puzzle on the Ohana Fit Fest course in Kilauea Saturday.
Youth make their way over tires near the start of the 5K Ohana Fit Fest run on Saturday in Kilauea.
Benjamin Petterson of Kapaa completes the spiderweb obstacle during the Ohana Fit Fest in Kilauea.
Nancy Williams of Princeville charges away for the start of the Ohana Fit Fest 10K obstacle course trail run in Kilauea Saturday.
KILAUEA — There were times Lars Neuman carried his son, Gunnar, during the Ohana Fit Fest 5K run on Saturday.
And there were times the 2-year-old insisted on running and walking on his own — and crawling under and over obstacles along the way on the Wai Koa Loop Trail.
“We love doing the outdoor activities and seeing the community coming together like this,” Lars said.
Little Gunnar was determined to go his own way.
“He’s doing good,” Lars said as he watched his son. “He wants to run a lot more. He wants to do it all.”
So did the other 300 or so runners and walkers who came out for the annual Ohana Fit Fest presented by Wilcox Health, a 5K and 10K obstacle trail run/walk. The fun family event was hosted by the nonprofit Kauai North Shore Community Foundation, which gives grants to nonprofits with a focus on health and wellness.
The start and finish were at the new Porter Pavilion at Anaina Hou Community Park.
Conditions were ideal — a cool, cloudy morning — and the terrain, while uneven in places, wasn’t even all that muddy.
People were in good spirits as they navigated obstacles that included hopping, stepping and jumping through a patch of tires, crawling under rows of string, climbing over planks pointed high, and twisting through a spiderweb of sorts. They even had to solve a combination lock as part of the mental challenge.
The 10K had some tougher obstacles, including a bucket carry, tire push and crab crawl.
The day also featured a community expo with a kids course, refreshments, silent auction and a free concert.
Ken Rosenthal, foundation board member and co-director of Ohana Fit Fest, said things went better than expected.
He was delighted as he watched the crowd of keiki and adults enjoying post-race activities.
“It’s outshining all our expectations,” he said.
Benjamin Petterson, 13, of Kapaa, called the trail run exhilarating.
“I love being in nature,” he said as he took a walking break in the final mile. “It’s just pure fun.”
Donna Apilado-Schumacher of Kilauea was competing in her first race. While she works out several times a week, she said she’s “not the greatest runner.”
“My girlfriends talked me into it,” she said.
And what did she think, with about two miles down and one to go?
“I like it. I feel like I can do this,” she said. “Maybe I’ll do it again next year.”
Sisters Mikaela and Mariah Alne moved to Princeville earlier this year from Butte, Mont. A friend told them about the trail run, and that it was for a good cause, so they came out.
After solving the combination lock challenge, they pushed on with big smiles.
“We’re loving it,” Mariah said. “It’s great to be out here.”
The men’s winner of the 5K was Bryce McAndrew of Austin, Texas, in 19:26, while Celine Abell of Kilauea was the first woman in 25:26.
Dawn Worley of Kilauea led the women’s field in the 10K in 47:10, while Norman Kadner of Steinau An Der in Hesse, Germany, led the men in 47:02.
Spencer Rhoades of Kilauea finished sixth overall in the 5K in 25 minutes, 16 seconds.
“It was nice to be back in the woods for a little bit and just see a bunch of friendly faces running past you, cheering you on as you’re cheering on others,” he said.
Like many, Rhoades enjoyed the event, admired his surroundings of mountains and mahogany trees more than he tried to race the clock.
“You always want to go for gold, but sometimes you have to look around and have gratitude for being here,” he said.
Bill Buley, editor-in-chief, can be reached at 245-0457 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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