MUSCATINE, Iowa–For seven years, Muscatine Community School District’s Race for the Schools proved a popular spring event, both for serious runners and for little kids eager to use up some energy, all while supporting the schools. After talking a one year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, organizers debated the best way to bring the event back this year. They decided a virtual race would prove optimal for continuing this Muscatine classic going while still observing public health measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The virtual Race for the Schools will include both a 5K race and Muskie Mile options. Between April 23 and May 1, registered runners, dressed in their official race shirts and numbers, may run a route of their choice, whether the original race route or one of their choosing, and submit a photo of themselves and their time (if they wish). Everyone who submits a photo will receive a ribbon for finishing their race and get entered to win a prize. Because no volunteers or first responders will monitor the virtual race, organizers encourage runners and walkers to plan their race for places without traffic (like Muscatine’s trail system) and for students to always run with an adult. “The fun thing about a virtual race is participants can choose their own race day, time, and route,” said Board Office Administrative Assistant and Co-Race Director Daphne Donald.
The Race for the Schools not only encourages people to get active but supports the physical education programs at each of Muscatine’s schools. All of the money raised allows physical education teachers to purchase supplies to make classes more engaging and effective and to offer fun and physically active outings, when circumstances permit.
For anyone looking for a fun and active spring event to participate in, Madison physical education teacher and Co-Race Director Becky Eserhaut recommends giving the virtual Race for the Schools a try. “Getting more people to enjoy going out for a walk or a jog even after Race for the Schools would be a wonderful community achievement,” she said.
If you would like to register, you may complete a physical registration form (available from the Muscatine Community Y, the board office, and each school) or online at the Race for the Schools website. On April 23, all registered racers can pick up their packet, including a race number, color changing cup, and a race shirt (while supplies last). As part of a long standing tradition, everyone who registers can choose a school they would like to support, helping that school earn the coveted School Challenge Trophy.