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Great Weather Caps This Year's Successful Father's Day Event

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BELMONT, MA.   The Brendan Grant FoundationTM once again proved that it can hit for distance in its second annual 5K race - Brendan's Home RunTM. The event, held on Father's Day, Sunday 15 June, raised over $13,000 to benefit charities supported by the Foundation, webff_pic7.jpg (114540 bytes) including The Brendan Grant Scholarship Fund.  It was a great day of sunshine and smiles all around, with some impressive times recorded by the runners.

 This year's event had 222 runners and 254 walkers, for a total of 476 runner/walker participants. With the approximate 60 volunteers and almost as many children involved in the kids race (i.e., kids race participants did not need to formally register), there was well over 550 people involved.  Of the 476 runner/walkers, 106 runners and 142 walkers had pre-registered beforehand, thus assuring that they were among the first 400 applicants who received a T-Shirt commemorating the event.

webff_pic3.jpg (27644 bytes) The best overall time was claimed by Dan Vassallo of Wilmington, MA at 17:07.2, which also places him as the best time for a male runner. The overall female winner was Kerry O'Donovan of Belmont, MA with a time of 21:45.2.  The course record is 16:21 and was set in 2002 by Jon Rosen.

webff_pic4.jpg (78521 bytes)The walk started promptly at 9:30 AM, and the runners got underway at 10:00 AM  with the starting gun. The participants covered every age category from 19-and-under to 60-and-over, and in recognition of Father's Day, trophies were also awarded to the fastest Father/Daughter and Father/Son pairs. The runners and walkers traversed the course which began on Concord Avenue at the new Belmont High School track, proceeded to Cross Street past Winn Brook School, followed Channing Road back to Concord Avenue and finished where it started at the Belmont High School track. The morning was sunny and warm, and was perfect for maximum spectator enjoyment.

 After the walkers and runners got underway, kids aged 12 and under got a chance to flex their competitive muscles. Two groups of children, 10 to 12 and 9-and-under, raced on the new oval track.  Every child wore a #1 (Brendan's baseball uniform number while at BHS) and web_pic_0469.jpg (79836 bytes) received a ribbon for participating. The top finishers were: webff_pic8.jpg (49341 bytes) Hannah Bowe (age 8) for girls 8 &  under; Amy Sterling (age 10) for girls 9 - 12; Kevin Connor (age 8) for boys 8 & under; and Aidan Hernon (age 9) for boys 9 - 12.  Ask anyone who witnessed the youth races, and they will certainly tell you that this was an impressive display of speed from likely future track stars.

While the participants waited to hear the final results from all of the age brackets, raffle prizes were awarded by emcee Rick Freeman. In a continuing tradition, 2003 Brendan Grant Scholarship winner Charlie Synnott chose the winning tickets. Prizes were donated by a wide range of supporters and sponsors.

The event ended with the announcement of male and female winners by age group.  Female winners by age group were: 19/under - Rory Gallagher ( 23:53.7); 29/under - Lauren Pizzi ( 21:56.3); 39/under - Carolyn Butte ( 22:28.1); 49/under - Kerry O'Donovan ( 21:45.2); 59/under - Marcia Glidden ( 23:31.2); and, over 60 - Judy Upperman ( 31:38.2).  
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Top male finishers by age group were: 19/under- Dan Vassallo ( 17:07.2); 29/under - David Irving ( 17:42.0); 39/under - Eddie Leba ( 19:11.1); 49/under - Jack Fahey ( 17:25.2); Bruno Gallinelli ( 19:05.1); and, over 60 - Joseph Pellegrino ( 21:28.2). 

webff_pic2.jpg (41541 bytes)The fastest Father/Daughter team went to Will Brownsberger and his daughter Rae, and the fastest Father/Son team was taken by Dick Lehr and his son Nick.  All race results are available from Cool Running.  Also see the related story in the Belmont Citizen Herald for further details.

 Presenting Sponsors were: Belmont Savings Bank & Vera Vest Investments. Additional Support was provided by Belmont Wheelworks & Champion Sporting Goods. Numerous organizations and individuals provided all types of great raffle prizes and in-kind donations.

This year's Father's Day event raised over $13,000 after expenses to benefit charities supported by Foundation, including The Brendan Grant Scholarship Fund.  The scholarship was established in memory of Brendan Grant, the accomplished 19-year old Belmont baseball player who was fatally injured  in an outfield collision during a Senior Babe Ruth game in June 200l.

The scholarship provides assistance to a senior Belmont High School athlete who will be attending an institution of higher learning after graduation. The scholarship is intendedwebff_pic5.jpg (84746 bytes) to reward a player who possesses the same positive spirit and leadership skills for which Brendan was known. This year's Brendan Grant Scholarship was awarded to Charlie Synnott, a member of the web_pic_0473.jpg (108578 bytes) Class of 2003.

 Last year's race/walk was also a great success with 326 total participants, including 167 runners and 159 walkers.    Click here for the full story about the 2002 race.  In 2002, the new Belmont track was not completely finished, but this year it provided the perfect venue.

With the support of great weather, this year's race/walk resulted in a great day with many smiles from everyone in attendance.   This has becomes a great community Father's Day event. We're already excited for next year!
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We hope that you can join us for next year's race.  A detail of the course layout can be accessed by clicking on the sketch that you see here to obtain a pdf file that is suitable for printing purposes.  This pdf file includes a detail of the race course. An additional sketch providing a detailed overview of the start and finish line is also available.  Additional directions can be obtained at www.mapquest.com (and using the address of 221 Concord Ave., Belmont, MA 02478).   We look forward to seeing you on Father's Day 2004!