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Marysville to host open track meet
When Dave Hall says the citys upcoming all-comers track meet is for all ages, he means it.
The Marysville Parks and Recreation athletic coordinator said the meet coordinators have acquired hurdles that adjust down to a height of six inches to accommodate the citys youngest athletes in the inaugural meets 50-meter hurdles event.
A lot of thought has been put into making the meet a family-friendly event.
For the popular, short-distance events, Hall explained, organizers will create heat times for athletes based on age and turnout, for instance putting kids eight and under in the same race and adults with runners in their late teens.
An abridged list of field events long jump, standing long jump, softball throw, shot put and high jump takes kids into consideration as well.
What we do in the shot put is we modify it for the little guys, we use a bocce ball, so the little kids can throw something, Hall said, adding that the separate softball throw event will be exclusively for participants younger than 15.
In addition to the 50-meter dash and hurdles, runners can choose to compete in the 100, 100 hurdles, 200, 400, 400 relay, 800 and joggers mile.
Anybody can run in it and they have to predict their time, Hall said of the joggers mile. If theyre within three seconds of their time, they get a prize.
A successful all-city track program in Bellingham got Marysville Parks and Rec thinking about replicating the format. City staff went to a similar meet in Burlington, Hall said, where Skagit Countys sports-minded have been competing since 2002.
What were trying to do over the next couple years is really plug into this healthy community concept, he said.
For parents worried their kids are too young to participate in events like the 50-meter dash and 50-meter hurdles, Hall added, parents at the established programs have found innovative ways to help their kids finish.
Theyve got one parent at the starting line going, Run to mom! They dont know where theyre going, he said.
The all-comer meets will be held at the Marysville-Pilchuck High School track on four consecutive Thursdays, beginning July 12. Pre-registration is open now, but the indecisive may wait until the day of the event. Registration is $3 per person.
Hall added that volunteers are needed to assist staff members at the meet.
M-P track coach Randy Davis has helped the meet get off the ground by providing access to the high schools track and field equipment and his some 20 years of organizational knowledge.
Davis said he might even come out and participate in one of the four meets.
Im working on my fitness right now, trying to drop some weight. I might drop in the joggers mile. I used to do those quite a bit, Davis said.