WEST ORANGE, NJ — More than 2,000 runners and walkers, as well as more than 200 volunteers, enjoyed the beautiful fall weather and participated in the third annual RWJBarnabas Health Running with the Devils 5K Run & Walk on Saturday, Nov. 2, at the South Mountain Recreation Complex in West Orange.
This event supports the commitment of both RWJBarnabas Health and the New Jersey Devils to build healthier communities by promoting healthy, active lifestyles and world-class health care. This year, the charitable event raised $125,000 to benefit programs and services of RWJBarnabas Health and its local facilities.
The highlight of race day was the first-ever Battle of the New Jersey Mascots, featuring an obstacle course race that kicked off the festivities. NJ Devil and a lineup of popular mascots — Buster of the Lakewood BlueClaws, Rutgers’ Scarlet Knight, Sparkee of the Somerset Patriots, Princeton’s Tiger; Boomer from the Trenton Thunder, Monmouth University’s Shadow, the Seton Hall University Pirate and Myrtle the Turtle from Turtle Back Zoo — battled for NJ Mascot bragging rights prior to the start of the 5K.
NJ Devil claimed victory and took home the inaugural trophy. All participating mascots stayed to cheer on runners and walkers, and take photos with participants.
The event also featured Wellness on Wheels, the 35-foot vehicle, equipped with a hydroponic greenhouse and a full kitchen, and the NJ Devils interactive mobile unit, a popular attraction for attendees.
Moreover, New Jersey Devils alumni and Stanley Cup champions Colin White and Grant Marshall served as official race starters and took photos with participants, while former NY Giants two-time Super Bowl champion and RWJBarnabas Health Ambassador David Diehl took photos with attendees, including members of the Bloomfield Fire Department — who ran the 5K in full gear. Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo Jr. served as honorary chairman of the event.
Huan Tran, of Montclair, was the overall winner of the 5K, finishing in 16:44:59, while Fawzia Kheir, of Jersey City, was the winner of the women’s race, crossing the finish line in 19:52:80.
Carolyn Dorworth, the team captain for #JEFFSTRONG, represented the top fundraising team for the event, and will receive a complimentary skating party for 75 to 100 people at the RWJBarnabas Health Hockey House.
For race results and additional information about the 2019 RWJBarnabas Health Running with the Devils 5K Run and Walk, visit rwjbh.org/runningwiththedevils.
Photos Courtesy of RWJBarnabas Health