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Run Your Buns Off road race kicks off with patriotic start

Amanda DiFilippe and Dorcas Gordon held up pans filled with some of the sticky buns awarded all who ran in the 4.2-mile Run Your Bun Off charitable race last weekend. (Photo by Donna Rhodes) (click for larger version)
September 05, 2019
BRISTOL When the 10th annual Run You Buns Off 4.2-Mile Run/Walk was ready to hit the road last Saturday morning, there was a technical glitch that prevented them from playing the Star Spangled Banner before the starting pistol sounded. A pair of young children, however, stepped up to remedy the situation and send everyone off with a big smile.

Seven-year-old Leila and her five-year-old brother Thomas said they knew the words to the National Anthem and were quickly handed the microphone. As the two began to sing, all 314 people registered for the race joined in for the best start ever, as race director /co-founder Audrey Goudie said when they were through.

"This could become a tradition," she and co-founder Garlyn Manganiello agreed.

Leila and Thomas were at the race to cheer on their parents, Caroline and Joe Reynolds. While the family now lives in Boxford, Mass., mom and dad grew up on Newfound Lake where their families still live. The couple has taken part in the Labor Day weekend race all ten years, but hearing their children sing the National Anthem made it extra memorable this time.

Goudie and Manganiello began the race in 2010 with the idea of raising money for a local scholarship fund. The 4.2-mile distance was selected because Goudie calculated it to be the distance one would have to run in order to burn off the calories incurred by eating one of the sticky buns from Manganiello's bakery, Basic Ingredients. At the end of each race, participants are given a sticky bun to celebrate their finish.

The first year was such a success that it has become a Labor Day weekend tradition for many. Now overseen by the Newfound Area Charitable Fund the two women formed, their board members take applications from local nonprofit organizations each year then select two or three of them to divide the race profits amongst.

This year the groups chosen were Newfound Area Nursing Association, New Hampton Community School Parent Teachers Organization, Bristol Elementary School's PTO, and Tapply-Thompson Community Center.

TTCC applied for the money so they could purchase cameras for the high school students they take on a special Westward Bound trip each year. With no smart phones allowed on the team-building excursion, the center will now purchase loaner cameras they can use on those trips out west.

Susan DiLuzio of NANA had a booth set up at the race last weekend, handing out information on her organization's new programs. She said their request to NACF was twofold. One use of the funds will be to help their newly developed Chair Yoga program. Held at the Bristol Senior Center, the program is 8-weeks long and invites people of all ages to join them. The first session just ended but DiLuzio said they hope to run a second session in October. Interested parties can contact NANA for times and dates.

The second part of their request was for the purchase of tote bags for their Hospice care patients and families. Rather than presenting new patients with an armload of pamphlets, paperwork, a hospice blanket and other personal items they provide, they will now be able to fill the totes with all the information and gifts to simply hand out when needed.

"We're delighted we were selected to receive the money to do this," said Hospice volunteer Daryl Healy.

The elementary school PTO members were delighted as well. In New Hampton representative Amanda DiFilippe said the money will be used for an exciting all-school field trip to the Museum of Science in Boston. In Bristol, Dorcas Gordon of the PTO said their goal is to redesign the grounds of the elementary school to hopefully include an outdoor classroom, a new playground and a horticultural area.

"We'll be using this money to get a design for the project so we can then move forward," said Gordon.

Goudie said that it's hard to believe they've reached a ten-year milestone for the race, but more importantly she and Manganiello were thrilled to realize that as of this year, they have raised approximately $80,000 that has then been invested back into the Newfound community.

The top three finishers for men and women for the 2019 Run Your Buns Off race were Duane Oftedahl of Atkinson, N.H. in first place with a time of 25:01, Jeffrey Mattson (Bristol) placed second at 26:17, and 16-year-old Graham Peterson (Bristol) was third with his time of 26:23. For the women, Bristol resident Emily Rivinius led the way with her time of 28:17. Julia Meehan of Boston finished at 29:50, and close behind in third place for the division was Kristen Driscoll, also of Bristol, with a time of 29:57.

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