By Jacob Mathias
Some Stevens Point police officers want you to run away from them.
The 2nd annual Run from the Cops 5K race, hosted by the Stevens Point Police Officer’s Organization, is set for 10 AM on Saturday, Sept. 26.
Run from the Cops began last year as a way for local police officers to engage with the community by running together in a charity 5K race.
“It’s a way for the community to see us in a comedic relief type atmosphere,” said Officer Ted Wanta, an organizer of the race. “It’s a good way for us to give back to the community without our uniforms on and to talk with the community without our uniforms on which we need at this point in time.”
The SPPOO represents all the police officers employed by Stevens Point- sergeants to patrol officers.
He said last year’s race had about 110 runners but hopes for better weather and many more participants in this year’s race.
The race begins by the northeast corner of the Portage County Courthouse on the 1500 block of Church St. Racers will run along city streets all the way to Bukolt Park and back to the courthouse.
Police officers will begin the race at the back of the pack and try to work their way forward through the crowd.
The 5K’s registration fee is $25 until September 24 and $30 after that. Proceeds from registration are donated to area youth organizations.
Last year’s proceeds were awarded to SPASH and Pacelli Project Graduation and to Stevens Point Fast Pitch Softball.
“It will rotate every year. We won’t give to the same one every year,” said Wanta. “We usually meet after the race to figure out exactly who needs it at that time the most.”
After runners showed up in prisoner costumes of black and white striped jumpsuits last year, Wanta said they’ve instituted a costume contest into this year’s race. A trophy will be presented to the runner with the best villain costume.
“We just want to make it a little more fun for kids and maybe pull a few more college kids into it,” he said.
Trophies will also be awarded to the top male and female runner in each category. All runners will also receive a t-shirt for the event. Coffee, water, donuts and bananas will be available at the start and finish of the race as well.
For more information and registration, click here.