Runners turn out in droves for 10th Annual Tryon Half Marathon

Published 1:09 pm Monday, November 14, 2022

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On Saturday morning, Harmon Field was packed with almost 150 runners, who then took to the road for the 10th Annual Tryon Half Marathon. All proceeds from this 13.1-mile run went to Thermal Belt Outreach of Columbus.

The race started at 8 a.m. and featured runners of all experience levels. While some were competing in their first half-marathon, others were far more experienced with quite a few full marathons under their belts.

Marathoner Hazel Tapp came all the way from Charlotte to compete.

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“This is such a great event,” Tapp says. “The course goes through such a beautiful area with such an amazing view of the mountains.”

The race started and finished at Harmon Field. The route followed Harmon Field Road and Hwy. 108 and before turning right onto Clarence Rhodes Road at Lynn Post Office. After making their way down Scriven and River Road, runners reached a turnaround to follow the course back to Hwy. 108 and onto Howard Gap Road, where they entered Harmon Field via the tomato field trail.

Outreach Events Coordinator Jessica Greve gave some history on the race. “It was founded a decade ago by Ashworth Financial and the Tryon Runner’s Club as a way to benefit Outreach,” Greve explained. “The race has grown since then though we missed a year for Covid. This year the medals were created especially for the race by local artist Alex Trumble.”

Thermal Belt Outreach helps provide assistance with food, financial assistance, and special programs for children and veterans in Polk County.

Everyone involved was as quick to thank the nearly 50 volunteers. “It’s so much fun to celebrate our tenth anniversary with so many wonderful people,” said Margot Carter, Outreach’s Executive Director. “We really appreciate all the support we get from Polk County. It’s amazing all the people who jump in to help. A great example is the delicious post-race breakfast that was completely donated by the community and is available to the runners and volunteers.”

Race Director Katheryn Gordon and volunteer Claire Ashworth

“This event wouldn’t take place each year without the help of our volunteers and from the community, especially local law enforcement,” Race Director Katheryn Gordon shared. “We also have to give a big thanks to our sponsors – Ashworth Financial Group, PRO Physical Therapy, Main Street Swimmer, Nature’s Storehouse, and First Citizens Bank.”