BLUEgrass Runners present awards and donations

01/25/2011 - 09:37

Shannan_Mikesmall.jpgThe BLUEgrass Runners of Lexington, KY, awarded honors to members and local runners and gave support to local charities at its awards dinner.

BLUEgrass Runners President Martin Bess addressed the attendees, praising them for volunteer efforts throughout the year. Club member Terry Foody then presented the awards for the top high school male and female runners in the Fayette County area.

Lafayette senior Jud Weaver was the top male runner thanks to his 16:40 time in the state cross-country meet held Nov. 13 at the Kentucky Horse Park. Sayre eighth-grader Maddox Patterson was the top female runner after winning the meet’s Class A division with a time of 18:25.

Treasurer Louise Hensley presented checks to representatives from the five charities that benefited from the 27th annual Thoroughbred Classic 5K and Kay Collins Memorial Mile. Proceeds from the race, which totaled $10,000, went to Give Kids the World, God’s Pantry, the Hope Center, Central Kentucky Radio Eye, and the Lexington Humane Society.

The evening concluded with presentation of club awards. All BLUEgrass Runners had the opportunity to vote for the award nominees.

Most Improved Male Runner of the Year went to Lew Bowling of Lexington, who became a runner in 2010. He earned several age-division awards and shaved over five minutes off his 5K time throughout the year.

Lisa Anstine of Lexington won Most Improved Female Runner after consistently lowering her times throughout the year and increasing her mileage in preparation for her first marathon.

Female Runner of the Year Amy Carwile of Lexington also began running in 2010 but
placed as one of the top female finishers in many of her races.

The Male Runner of the Year voting resulted in a tie between two accomplished athletes. Chris Grecco of Lancaster earned his award through strong performances in several distances from 5K to marathons, winning two races outright. Val Zeps of Lexington earned his by excelling not only in distance races but also in track events.

A second tie occurred in the Club Member of the Year category, which honors those who have shown exceptional dedication to BLUEgrass Runners:

-- Shannan Gabe of Lexington received her award due to her work as a club board member and the founder and leader of the club’s Website & Communications Committee. Shannan also initiated and oversaw the project that led to the creation of the club’s new logo and apparel.

-- Mike Lesshafft of Lexington was also honored for his contributions as a board member and Communications Committee member and for spearheading the initiative to add safety signage to Lexington’s new Legacy Trail. Mike will also serve as club president beginning in January.

About BLUEgrass Runners:
BLUEgrass Runners is a non-profit organization based devoted to promoting fitness, fellowship, and fun for runners of all ages and abilities. Its members range from milers to marathoners; walkers to sprinters; teenagers to veterans. To learn more about BLUEgrass Runners, or to become a member, go to

Photo: Shannan Gabe (left) and Mike Lesshafft were named club members of the year by the BLUEgrass Runners. Lesshafft is the club's new president.

Copyright © 2018 Running Journal