Shiver by the River: ’20-’21 Recap

The 31st Shiver by the River is finally complete! It was a crazy year. Of the 4 original dates, the March race was the only race held on its original date. Once we added an April race, it was also held, as planned. As part of our Covid changes, we gave finisher awards in lieu of age group awards, and each runner received a swag bag of pre-packaged snacks instead of the snacks normally offered after each race. Here’s a recap of 6 attempts at live races.

  • Three days before the December race, Governor Wolf placed a 50 person limit on outdoor events.  We had 205 runners registered who were given the option to switch to another race, or request a refund. We also decided to hold a race in April to give the runners another opportunity for a live race.
  • Due to the state of affairs, we made January a virtual race. Again, runners were given the option of switching their registration or requesting a refund. The finisher award was a unique COVID-themed medal. Swag bags were available for pickup on the original race date, at Jim Dietrich Park. Only 34 runners gave us results.
  • On the Wednesday prior to the February race, after much deliberation between the race directors and Muhlenberg Parks and Recreation, we decided to postpone the race for 2 weeks. We had had a lot of snow during the previous week, and most of the race course was only plowed enough for 1 car, not a car plus runners. The parking lot at Jim Dietrich also had minimum parking. Everyone gave their best effort for snow removal, but after several days of snow, there was just nowhere to put it. We sent an email to the February runners, explaining the situation, offering to move their registration or to send a refund.  
  • We FINALLY had a live race on Feb 28th.  113 runners braved the cold rain. Our finisher award was a head-wrap or gaiter, with a COVID-themed design. We had lots of positive feedback!   
  • On March 14th, we finally had a live race on one of the original dates!  114 runners participated.  The finisher award was a tumbler, with an infuser and a COVID-themed design. Once again, the runners loved the award.  
  • On April 11th, we had our final race. We had heavy downpours (fortunately the temps were warm) prior to the race, but only light drizzle during the race. Unfortunately, over 60 pre-reg runners were no-shows. However, 98 runners finished the race. We were very happy to have an adaptive runner from IM ABLE with 3 Pacers (Dale Wiest, Michael Whalen, Evan Falk) pushing the athlete through the 5K. Once again, we offered COVID-themed medals to the runners.      

As always, THANK YOU to all the Pacers who participated either by running, volunteering or both!   We sincerely appreciate all of our volunteers, whether you helped us at one race or every race!  We can’t thank everyone enough for their flexibility during the last few months!!!!!

We hope to be back in ’21-’22 with another 4-race series, possibly with some changes due to everything we have experienced in the past year. Stay tuned for more details! 

Sue, Georgine, and Tiffany  

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