Test your skills at the Black Bear Summer Track and Field Classic

| June 27, 2018

WARSAW – Athletes of all ages are invited to come test their skills at the 15th annual Black Bear Summer Track and Field Classic.

“We started this to raise money for the track program and to raise interest in track for little kids,” said Mike Gray, who wrapped up his last year of coaching track at River View High School this past spring.

The track and field classic, which is a fundraiser for River View’s track teams, will be held Saturday, July 7 at the school’s Don Rushing Stadium, located on the corner of State Route 60 and 36 in Warsaw.

Registration forms can be obtained on the River View Local School District website at www.river-view.k12.oh.us. Mailed pre-registration is highly suggested. Check-in and registration will be from 7 to 8:45 a.m. with field and running events beginning at 9 a.m.

“I competed at the classic after I graduated from high school,” said Cyrus Granger, who coaches track at River View. “It was fun and I think for me since I was still training and running track in college it was a good way for me to continue my workouts.”

Medals will be awarded for first, second, and third place. Ribbons will be given out for fourth, fifth, and sixth place. Participation ribbons will be given to ages 4 – 12 non-placers. The age groups for the track meet are 4-6, 7-8, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14, 15-16, 17-18, 19-29, 30-45, 46-55, and 56 and up. The cost for the track and field classic is $10 for unlimited events. Checks can be made payable to the River View Athletic Boosters.

“It’s fun to watch the little ones,” Gray said. “The first year we did it we used a gun to start their race, but it scared them so now we use a whistle for them and a gun for the older kids. We send the parents down to the finish line too so they know where they are running. We have several kids in our program that went all the way up through participating in this.”

He added that they usually get a nice variety of ages and mix of people who compete at the event.

“We’ve had a 78-year-old pole vaulter and former Big 10 champions,” Gray said. “We’ve even had people show up from Indiana and Pennsylvania. We try to get a lot of local people to come though because we really want to give our younger kids a taste of track.”

Granger agreed with Gray.

It’s a great opportunity for younger kids to actually get out and see what the sport is about and see some older people compete,” Granger said. “Some of the little ones who participate take it really serious and some just come for fun. The adults have a little bit more competitive edge to them.”

Money raised from the event helps the track program in a number of ways.

“We used it for a lot of things including buying equipment,” Gray said. “We had to use money raised from this and the kids selling things to buy a new pole vault pit that cost $15,000. Track is an expensive sport.”

Even though he is stepping down from coaching, Gray hopes to see the summer track and field classic continue.

“It’s a fun thing for families to do,” he said. “Mom and dad can come out and do a couple of events and so can the kids.”

For more information, see the registration form at www.river-view.k12.oh.us, or contact Gray at 740-502-9018.

“Come out, see all the events, try some out and test yourself,” Granger said.

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Category: High School, Sports

About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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