Written by Observer staff Thursday, 12 September 2013 00:00
A record number of folks showed up and raised a record amount of money for charity at Farmingdale’s ninth annual Main Street Mile. Runners and spectators alike enjoyed the warm, slightly muggy day, which began at 8:30 a.m. with a quarter-mile “fun run” for children. The children’s race ended with medals and free ice cream all around. The adults took to the streets for their first race at 9:15.
Of the 429 racers, 33 came from Farmingdale itself, with the rest from surrounding local towns such as Massapequa and Seaford, but some from as far away as Orlando, Florida and Phoenix.
Hometown sponsors included The Library Cafe, Dave & Busters, and the Flower Shop, but support came from a wide range of nearby businesses, such as Joel Harris Photography of Mineola (which took pictures at the post-race fundraiser), Bottles on Broadway in Massapequa, and Dr. Jospeh Ciaccio, DDS of Hewlett. A new sponsor, the Bulldog Law Group of East Islip, lent support for the post-race fundraiser at Croxley’s Ale House, which also donated generously.
Together, these businesses and the racers helped raise more than $10,000—a new record for the annual event. Proceeds benefit the Companions in Courage Foundation, a charity that builds interactive playrooms in hospitals. The nonprofit’s newest location—North Shore-LIJ’s Cohen Children’s Hospital in New Hyde Park—opened in April.
“It’s always an honor to see the Long Island community come together to help those in need,” said Pat LaFontaine, former NY Islander and Hockey Hall of Famer, who founded the CiC. “The Main Street Mile has become a great way for families to celebrate the start of the Labor Day weekend and to make a difference in the lives of sick kids.”
The men’s open division (under 40 years of age) was won for the second straight year by 25-year-old Ryan Zillman of Wantagh in a time of 4:16. He was followed by Joseph Greico of Massapequa in 4:20, and Alex Saavedra of Holbrook in 4:22. In the women’s open division, Katie McGrath of Oakdale won in 5:13, followed by Tara Wilson of West Islip in 5:19, and Shari Klarfeld of Plainview finishing third in 5:23.
The race finished in front of the Farmingdale Firehouse and Village Hall, with the post race awards ceremony taking place at the Gazebo on the Village Green.
In the men’s masters division, Boyd Carrington of Amityville won with a time of 4:24, followed by Alan Wells who traveled all the way from Orlando Florida in 4:25, and Gerry O’Hara of East Rockaway in 4:28. In the women’s masters division, Laura Brown of West Hampton won in 5:33, followed by Jill Skelly of Baldwin in 5:37 and Karen Conkling of Massapequa in 5:49.
There were also great performances from some of the younger participants, including 13-year-old Leonardo Cuozzo of Bellmore in 5:43, 14-year-old James Dooley of Massapequa in 5:57, and 10-year-old Jacki Amato of East Quogue in 6:43.
Among the youngest competitors: 7-year-old sisters Marissa and Megan McDougall, who finished in 8:13 and 9:25 respectively.