Penticton’s Jeff Symonds kicks off Peach City RunFest

Penticton’s own professional and world class triathlete Jeff Symonds will kick off Peach City RunFest this Sunday.

Penticton's Jeff Symonds will help kick off the Peach City RunFest this Sunday at Skaha Beach.

Penticton's Jeff Symonds will help kick off the Peach City RunFest this Sunday at Skaha Beach.

Penticton’s own professional and world class triathlete Jeff Symonds will kick off Peach City RunFest this Sunday.

Along with two new races, the five-kilometre for United Way charity walk/run and the one-mile kids/family run, it will be the 15th annual running of the half-marathon and seventh of the 10 km. The event started as a marathon and half-marathon, eventually evolving into the current event featuring family events and more serious races.

The start and finish are located on the shores of Skaha Lake. This out and back, mostly flat and fast course follows the shoreline of the lake and returns along the same route to a finish area on Skaha beach promenade.

The kid’s one-mile run will be hosted by Symonds, who’s finished third place in the 70.3 World Triathlon Championships to add to his many other victories and top performances. Recently Symonds had a spectacular fourth place finish in his first ever attempt at a long distance triathlon. He will be competing in Challenge Penticton this August.

Symonds will lead the kids on their one-mile run and be available to talk with them and sign autographs. All kids signing up for the event will receive a free coupon to either the climbing wall or bouncy castle which will be on site courtesy of Par-T-Perfect of Penticton. Registration is only $9 and includes a pancake breakfast, finishers medal and water bottle. This event is limited to 150 kids. Kids wanting to use the climbing wall or bouncy castle that are not registered will be charged a nominal fee.

The five km for the United Way will also go at 9 a.m. There are a number of local participants that have been following the weekly training program as provided by Peach City Runners and will get to test their program and training this weekend. A total of $10 of the $25 entry fee goes to the United Way. You still have time to sign up for this event as well. You can walk this event and make it a family event and support a great cause.

For the more serious runners, the event features the 10 km and half-marathon road races. Finisher medals will be provided for both events. Aid stations will be set up approximately every three km and awards are in five-year age groups and three deep. All participants in the races will receive a water bottle and pancake breakfast.

Register for all events at www.peachcityrunfest.com or call Peach City Runners at 250-490-3334. Volunteers are still needed in a number of positions, anyone interested in volunteering can also do so through the website or call Peach City Runners.

Drivers are asked to use caution Sunday morning from 8 a.m. until approximately 11:30 a.m.  The main course follows Skaha Lake Road (north) to South Main and out along Eastside Road to just before Skaha Estates and then turns back to finish at Skaha beach. Secondary courses will be in and around Skaha beach and utilizing the sidewalks.  The organizers thank everyone for their cooperation and invite the public to Skaha beach to watch the runners complete their events.