BY MEREDITH MASON
Media Writing Class: September 25, 2012
A little rain did not stop more than 450 students, alumni, faculty and community members from participating in the 13th annual Mansion 5k Run and Walk last Saturday to raise over $ 8,000 to benefit Salve Regina University Athletics.
The Mansion 5k begins and ends on the Salve Regina University campus. Runners make their way down historic Bellevue Avenue, along ocean-side mansions and through the Ochre Point neighborhood.
The Friends of Seahawk Athletics association, a group of Salve Regina alumni, parents and friends, raises money for the 18 intercollegiate athletic teams and athletic facilities at the university.
The race is one of the most anticipated events scheduled for the fall homecoming weekend. “The race always carries a high energy from participants each year,” said race director Matt Boxler. The massive turn out was not a surprise to the race committee, even with the soggy morning weather. Boxler stated that the cooler weather actually provided safer running conditions.
WSRU radio played Billboard Top 100 hits as runners gathered at the starting line. Students proudly wore their blue and green Salve attire, while sports teams showed off their jerseys. Visiting families and friends were included in the mix as well.
Small groups of supporters gathered at the finish line to await friends and family. The Salve Seahawk entertained small children, while runners slowly started to trickle in from the course.
From the experienced runners to the families with strollers, a strong sense of community was evident at this year’s run and walk. Salve Regina student Aubrey Gould used the phrase, “running together as a support system,” to describe her race experience. Gould has participated in other 5k’s, but said that this event was special because it brought everyone together for a cause at home.
The Mansion 5k was one of the first events for this year’s Fall Festival weekend. The three-day festival weekend invites parents, friends and alumni to celebrate with a variety of events on the Salve Regina campus including a kick off party pep rally, a Hunger Concert, and sporting events.