A big tip of the sombrero to Ivan Marsh and Camp Carol Joy Holling.  The 1st annual Empyrean Ales 5K pulled off what will likely be one of the most Fun run/races of the year.  A big thanks to all involved for letting Team Nebraska have some small part in the conduct of the event, it was our pleasure to be sure.

Over 500 runners registered for the tour of trails out at the camp.  And what a wonderful cause, providing camp experiences for children that might not otherwise afford the opportunity.  There is a whole lot of love at the camp, starting at the very top and evident with every staff member.  One of the highlights of the morning was a gentleman coming up to Ivan and reminding him that they met 16 years ago when Ivan was his camp counselor.  Nice.

A showcase of the differences between not-for-profit events and for profit events.  The amenities provided to each entrant only began with the sweet stocking cap bearing the event logo.

The facilities are first class for hosting a race.  The Town Hall accommodated everyone at the post race shindig.  And what a fete it was!  Plenty of FREE Empyrean Ales, plenty of FREE food catered by Fireworks (mixed green salad, beer cheese soup, bbq beef sandwiches).  A boat load of door prizes.  5 gallon keg certificates to each overall and age group winners, pint glasses and hats for 2nd & third.  And Beer For A Year raffle drawing.  The lucky winner was John Pearl, home on a 4 day leave from his military service in Virginia, his wife (in Lincoln) will undoubtedly be toasting her good fortunes throughout the rest of the year!

This is how runs/races should be done.  Giving something extra back to the runners for their entry fees.  No extra costs for liquid refreshment or food at the finish.  Hope you are planning on coming out to the Ni-Bthaska-Ke Trail Run, we roll this way too.

The race was started with the “murder of the snowman”, signifying the end of winter.  Linda pushed the snowman that had been built on the 2nd floor balcony to its doom, when it hit the ground the runners were off, a Great Time was had by all.

It was a Perfect Morning for a jaunt through Camp Carol Joy Holling.  Good clean living by all involved no doubt!

The water crossing was easier (and drier) for some than for others.

A little snow, a litte mud, and a lot of friends!

Team Nebraska was happy to be in on the planning and conduct of the event, we are always pleased to assist with good charitable deeds in the community.

And our athletes LOVE TO RACE!  Look at how Happy it makes them!  Tim Langdon leads Ivan and Brian Wandzilak.  Ivan would toy with them for the first two miles before pulling away to a :45 victory, Tim & Brian would be the next two across the line.

I’ve said it a hundred times before, Ivan Marsh is a True Nebraska Treasure.  He came up with the idea for the race, organized it, and won it!  First beer’s on Ivan!  He’ll be defending his Trek to the Top title this coming weekend, going for his 6th consecutive victory.

If you love the Trails as much as we do, we’ll see you on April 7th out at Platte River State Park.  Team Nebraska will also host the Swamp Stomp 8K Cajun Fest Trail Run on October 20 and the Monster Dash 5K Trail Run on October 27th.  Mark your calendars!