Over 30 participants ran, jogged and walked in the Patriot Leaders Society’s first annual ROTC 5K Run/Walk at 8 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 8.
The 5K was open to all Francis Marion University students and faculty, as well as the surrounding community, and only required a $10 entry fee.
The Patriot Leaders Society, an organization created by the FMU members of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, held the race to help raise money to pay for Dining Out, a class held by the ROTC that teaches proper etiquette for dinner or business meeting atmospheres.
Adam Wilson, the president of the Patriot Leaders Society and one of the organizers of the event, said that he was excited about how the race had come together.
“This is our first time ever holding a 5K, and we only had about a month to plan and get everything together,” Wilson said. “But we ended up having a really good turnout of over 60 people sign up.”
The course, which was just a little over three miles, was laid out on the FMU campus. Checkpoints were set up throughout the course for the runners to rest or grab a bottle of water.
The participants of the race consisted mostly of FMU students, faculty and their friends and family.
Henry Watson, a junior majoring in business – marketing, was one of the runners in the race.
“I learned about the race from a member of my business fraternity,” Watson said. “I run sometimes, but I have never run a 5K, so this is a personal challenge for me.”
The race itself started at 8 a.m. and lasted one hour.
After finishing the course, racers could help themselves to free doughnuts from Dunkin’ Donuts and water.
Once everyone had completed the race, trophies were presented to the top three times for men and women as well as the oldest and youngest participants.
All the runners who finished the 5K were also entered in a raffle, and those who won received book bags provided by the National Guard.
Amy Scott-Lundy, a graduate of FMU in 2007, came in with the top time for the female racers.
She talked about her experience with past running events in which she has participated.
“I run three to four times a week, and I’ve run numerous 5Ks and 10Ks,” Scott-Lundy said. “But regardless of the length of the distance, every distance presents its own challenge.”
After the success of this 5K, Wilson said that the Patriot Leaders Society hoped to take the knowledge and experience they gained from organizing this 5K to make next year’s 5K a bigger event with more participants and more community involvement and sponsorship.