The annual Molly Dattilo Run/Walk/Bike will be held on Saturday, May 12th, 2018.
The race is named for Dattilo, an avid and enthusiastic local runner who attended Madison Consolidated High School and disappeared without a trace in 2004 at the age of 22.
The events start around 7:45 am with a 5K run and 5K walk open to all ages, is followed by separate girls and boys half-mile runs for grades K-3, and ends with two separate girls and boys one-mile runs for grades 3-5, all ending around 10:30 am.
All foot races begin and end at 400 W Vaughn Drive by Crystal Beach on the Ohio Riverfront.
Races will begin rain or shine and there are no refunds.
The format of the race evolved from some earlier races held in Madison.
In 1982, Tim Hoffman held a 5K race that also featured a one-mile race for elementary students on the grounds of the Madison State Hospital and it became an annual event.
Girls, Inc. in Madison assumed sponsorship of the race in the year 2000.
Molly’s early running career included winning the one-mile girls event as a third grader and the race resulted in running clubs being started in most local elementary schools.
When Girls Inc. could no longer administer the race, Paul Kelly, a running club coach at Pope John Elementary for 24 years, organized the present race committee to continue the tradition.
A standout runner in his high school career at Shawe Memorial High School, Kelly proposed a partnership between the running programs at Madison Consolidated High School and Shawe Memorial.
According to Kelly, “It’s a moment in time. Over 1000 people show up and some just to watch it.”Celestra Dattilo Dewey (Molly’s sister and committee member) mentioned that “I’ve had someone stop in from out of town, who just happened to be there, to say it was amazing.”
She went on to point out that even parents who didn’t plan on running see their children participating and then get involved themselves, which promotes health all around.
“Molly would be really impressed” she says
Money raised by the yearly running event goes to fund scholarships in Molly’s name for local students active in Molly’s sports of running and swimming, as well as the running programs at Shawe and Madison High Schools.
The Molly Dattilo race committee is committed to remembering Molly and encouraging present and future runners.
As a matter of fact, a recording of her singing ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ is played before the run begins.
Visit www.mollydattilorunwalk.com for more details and a registration form.
Here is a video from last year where the 2017 winners are listed:
Here is a video we made promoting the event in 2016, featuring Kelly and Dattilo Dewey: