MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Runners and walkers of all abilities are invited to participate in the inaugural Orion 5K for St. Patrick Community Outreach, Inc, but if you have record breaking speed, Saturday evening, June 9 could be a nice payday.
As a certified slow poke with a PR 5K time of 22:20 years ago, it boggles the mind that a human being can run the same distance seven, eight or even nine minutes faster.
Our charity race has attracted some of the fastest people in the Mid-South for 21 consecutive years.
Formerly known as the Gibson Guitar 5K, Orion Federal Credit Union generously picked up the sponsorship baton and is offering a serious incentive for those among us with a breakneck pace.
For example, the Orion 5K will award $1,000 to the first woman who can break Kacey Nobert's 2017 Gibson 5K record time of 18:07.
The Orion 5K will award $1,000 to the first male runner who can better Kyle Lewis's record setting 2009 Gibson 5K time of 15:18.
But wait, there's more!
For the first person who can beat the U.S. 5K record, the Orion 5K will award a check for $5,000. The current male American Road 5K record is 13:20. The female American 5K Road Record is 14:50!
It's blinding speed for those of us whose best races are way back in the rearview mirror.
This reporter became the grandfather of a beautiful set of twins this past April (a boy, Mason and a girl, Charlotte), so I'm lucky to walk a mile in 13:20, never mind finish a 5K!
In addition to these significant financial incentives, the overall male and female champions of the inaugural Orion 5K will receive an award sure to become the envy of many a trophy case. The speedsters will receive the inaugural Orion 5K Champion's Belt--a one of a kind award that will be featured on WMC Action News 5 during race week, June 3-9.
While you might lack the rocket fuel to win the Orion 5K Champions Belt, the first 2,000 people to cross the finish line are guaranteed to take home hardware:an attractive medal worthy of your collection. Plus, you'll receive a commemorative Orion 5K t-shirt and a cordial invitation to our "off the chain" post-race block party!
Marcella and Her Lovers will bring the jam and headline our celebration that'll feature great food, ice cold beer, other beverages, and a family friendly Kids' Zone.
We'll give Marcella and Her Lovers a break about 8:45 p.m. to present our first, second, and third place Orion 5K age group awards as well as honors to the fastest mother-daughter, mother-son, father-daughter and father-son combos!
But here's the best reason to join us Downtown across from FedExForum on Saturday night, June 9: you'll advance the mission of our 501 © 3 non-profit, St. Patrick Community Outreach, Inc.
Our nonprofit sells fruits, vegetables, and other healthy foods at cost in Memphis food deserts via our Green Machine Mobile Food Market, a MATA bus refashioned as a rolling farmer's market. Be sure to have a look through the Green Machine at the post-race party.
The nonprofit operates Memphis' largest emergency food pantry in concert with the Mid-South Food Bank and MIFA.
In addition to that good work, the ministry feeds the hungry at our Sunday soup kitchen all 52 Sundays of the year. So make haste to register for the Orion 5K by clicking here and go like lightning for the generous prize money or shake a leg to get your finisher's medal and a party worthy of your Saturday night for a great cause on June 9.