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Annual Manchester Road Race Encompasses Big and Little Events

From volunteers to kid runners the Thanksgiving event involves the entire community
CT State Manchester staff member Geeta Khade has been volunteering for the Manchester Road Race for more than 10 years.

Did you know the Manchester Road Race involves more than the runners who strap on their shoes – and sometimes turkey costumes – and run the 4.748 miles each Thanksgiving? Since its start in 1927, the race has depended on volunteers to make it happen.

Geeta Khade, an educational assistant at CT State Manchester, is one of those people.  Volunteers like Khade do everything from handing out numbers to participants to making sure the route is clear.

When Khade started volunteering in 2014, she said she brought her son to the race, who, at the time, was in high school and needed volunteer credit. Because of the people she met there and the experience she had, she has kept coming back.  

It’s a good group, and something to give back to the community,” said Khade.  

The Manchester Road Race is also a charitable cause; the money raised from sponsors and participants goes to other Manchester organizations, including a scholarship offered every year at CT State Manchester. Khade was awarded a $1,500 scholarship when she entered the college as a student. 

Khade said that, especially after receiving the scholarship, she felt it wasn’t fair if she didn’t give back. She encourages others to volunteer as well.  

“It’s a beautiful thing because you feel you did something good with your life,” said Khade.  

Also celebrating the event each year are those not yet big enough to run the whole race, but can just run!

The Little Manchester Road Race took place Nov. 18 for kids 12 and under. They may have run a shorter distance on the track at Manchester High School, but they had fun.

The Little Manchester Road Race took place Nov. 18. (Albert Kim)

Who knows, maybe the next road race winner is among this crowd of littles.

The official Manchester Road Race took place on Nov. 23. Morgan Beadlescomb of Boston edged out defending champion Connor Mantz of Provo, Utah, by  3 seconds to win the men’s division of the race. Weini Kelati of Johnson City, Tennessee won the woman’s division for the third consecutive time.

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