Wednesday Night Runs: December Locations

We run every Wednesday night–year round–at 6:15pm. Come join us. All paces welcome. No membership required.

–DECEMBER 4: Oley Valley High School, 17 Jefferson St, Oley. Post-run gathering at Bella Italia Restaurant.

–DECEMBER 11: Home Depot, 1731 Crossing Dr, Wyomissing. Run to see the lights at Gring’s Mill! Bring money to make a donation.

–DECEMBER 18: Hampden Park (near Reading High School). Christmas on the Mountain run! Bring money to make a donation! Option to climb up to the Pagoda and run along Skyline Drive.

–DECEMBER 25: Christmas run at Nolde Forest, Sawmill Parking Lot, 8:30am. No PM run.

Election Results (2019)

Club President (1 year term)

Steve Maguire

Board of Directors (2 year term)

Mike Yoder, Beth Kohl, Karen Rule, Ellie Alderfer

Note: Nine club members serve on the Board of Directors, and each is elected to serve a two-year term. Five or four of the Board positions are up for election each year. The members of the Board who are currently in the middle of their terms, and will be up for re-election next year, are Larry Drogo, Tom Chobot, Sue Jackson, Jon Durand, and Matt Brophy.

The remaining Board members would like to thank outgoing Board members Phil Lechner and Ken Seale for their service to the Board and the club.

Renew Your Membership for 2020

Membership dues for 2020 are due by the end of the year. $20 for a single membership.  $30 for a family membership (limit to 2 adults over 21 in the same household; children under 21 are free associate members).  3 options for payment are available: PayPal, snail mail, or use RunSignUp. For the first 2 options you must go to the Pagoda Pacer website.

You can go to the Pagoda Pacer website and click on Join Now. Or use this link.

This will use Paypal for online payment.

2nd option is print and fill out a paper membership application and mail it and a check to:

Pagoda Pacers A.C., PO Box 4115, Reading, Pa 19606

Make check payable to Pagoda Pacers Athletic Club.

Or, if you received an email from prompting you to renew, you can follow the directions in that email.

If you have any questions or concerns contact me at

Thank you,

Dave Gallen

Membership Coordinator

Letter from the President (December 2019)

by Steve Maguire

Word on social media was Target had deals on Christmas decorations where you’d get $50 back if you spent $100.   This started an exchange on lights etc and made me wonder the long term impact. You see my youth crossed the time between screw-in bulbs and those first plug-in.  I’m not sure if it was frugality, pride, or some generational thing, but strings of lights were not replaced without a fight.

Probably in each household, year after year there was a system to how they were put away, and when they didn’t light, you learned how electricity worked.  In those strands each bulb was connected in series like a chain. If one bulb failed, the entire strand goes dark and you’d spend the afternoon swapping bulbs to find the culprit.   Through this rite of passage, I may have learned much: unsafe techniques on a ladder, don’t hang lights on a holly bush, what it feels to get shocked, and a few curse words.

We try to get smarter with each passing year, and you learn to check things ahead of time.  You learn taking down is as much work as hanging up. You learn to prioritize with what’s available, and most of all, you try to remember why you do it. 

Hanging lights is probably the closest I’ll get to being a Race Director.  I’m humbled and appreciative that the club elected me for a second term as President.  I’m a realist, however, in knowing this organization functions because all the lights light.  No different than the single bulbs, each member–through volunteering, participating, and promoting–does a part and the Berks area benefits.

November 10th was the 25th running of the Oley Country Classic 10-Miler and 5k.  I believe over the history of the race, the Oley Youth League has benefitted something like $100,000.  This is done through the hard work of Barry Goodhart, Lenny Burton, and all the Pacer volunteers.  What is amazing is the entry fee is still close to the price in the 90s at only $25. As noted, I have been electrocuted, but I can’t recall even a 5k at that price where you get a competitive race, a shirt, and awards that are as impressive as the work of Maggie Gallen (Barnard).   If you haven’t been, the shop at Googleworks is a great opportunity to support local artists such as Maggie.

December brings two races we host with and without festive Christmas bells and lights.   The Shiver series starts Sunday, December 8th at 10 am.   Time to register your first of at least 3 finishes in the series.  Three weeks later, join the festivities for the Kris Kringle 5 miler Sunday, December 29th.   Both of these are well organized and opportunities to stay active through the cold on the course with a bib or as a volunteer.

We’ll skip the December meeting as David Feinauer (aka Swamp) and team promise to put us all on the Naughty List with a not to be missed Christmas Party on Friday, December 6th at the Grill Fire Company. If you haven’t gotten your fill of Christmas decorating, I’m sure the team would appreciate the help with raffle prizes and decorating. I don’t believe ladders are permissible.

 Last but not least, I’d like to thank Phil Lechner and Ken Seale for their time and involvement with both the Board and the Pacers’ club in general.   Ken and Phil both have changes and new opportunities in their lives, which opened the board positions in which Ellie Alderfer and Karen Rule were elected.

We’re working on a Royals game for January and Walleyball for February. If we don’t see you in December, have an amazing Holiday–enjoy the lights!

Time to quit typing, got to run……. Steve