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Ho Ho Ho Run Finishes the Year! Great Competition, and Donations

Eight of the first 10 finishers less than 30 years old

Conor Shelly reprised his Oyster Bay Town Supervisor’s 5K win, Stefanie Braun reprised her Marcum Workplace Challenge win in the Women’s Division and Peter Hawkins completed still another wheelchair win, as beautiful skies and brisk temperatures greeted the competitors in the 24th annual Carter, DeLuca, Farrell & Schmidt Ho Ho Ho Holiday Run on Dec. 17. A total of 1,238 runners, walkers and wheelchair athletes navigated the streets of Bethpage before crossing the finish line at the John F. Kennedy Middle School. (FYI the record number finishers for this event was 1256 in 2001.)

Highlighting the Run from a local standpoint were the outstanding performances of a trio of local youngsters – Thomas Brouillard of Woodbury, Bradley Raxenberg of Woodbury, and Austin Huminski of Oyster Bay, who finished, 6th , 9th and 10th overall respectively. Humiski had been the overall winner of the 2009 edition of the Run, but the great crop of local youngsters on the Long Island racing scene in 2011 made this a fiercely competitive event, with eight of the first 10 finishers being less than 30 years old!

Notwithstanding the great performances of the leading runners, the big emphasis of the day was on families, with lots of mother-daughter, mother-son, father-son (see the cover of this issue!) and father-daughter duos making their way though the course, and lots of youngsters participating in the free fun run that preceded the main event. Costumes abounded – with a host of reindeer, Santas and assorted elves throughout the course, along with Krispy Kreme donut lady Mary Lambros, and “Naughty & Nice” ladies Fran DeAngelis and Jennifer Lee.

Congratulations to Race Director Ric Diveglio of the Greater Long Island Running Club; to the title sponsor Melville Intellectual Property Law Firm of Carter, DeLuca, Farrell & Schmidt (thank you Ray Farrell!); and to Local 338 RWDSU/UFCW (thank you John Durso and Charlie Hamilton!) for also providing a big financial boost. A big thank you also goes to Whole Foods for the bananas, to Kozy Shack for the puddings, and to buddy Glen Wolther of All Round foods for the cupcakes, muffins and other baked goods.

Thanks to John Snitko of JMS Racing Services for his quick and accurate results and for being so easy to work with, and to Logistics Coordinator Fred von der Heydt and Race Announcer Terry Bisogno for still another outstanding day’s work!

The Nassau County Police Department 8th Precinct and the Bethpage Auxiliary Police were extremely supportive.

Proceeds from the event will be turned over to The Opening Word, an education program conducted by the Dominican Sisters for poor and uneducated Long Island women to give them the tools they need to become productive members of society. In addition over 1,000 toys were collected for the John Thiessen Children’s Foundation.