Come To Genesis Firecracker Run and Stay For The Party
The Genesis Firecracker Run will return to the streets of East Moline on July 4, and everyone who participates in the 30th anniversary will be a winner.
For the third year, Genesis Health System will be the title sponsor of the run that has become an Independence Day tradition. The race, one of the largest road races in the Quad Cities, will be sending participants home with more than memories this year.
Free to the first 2,500 registrants in the 5K and 10K races will be a limited edition, 29-ounce ceramic beer stein. Every finisher in the 5K and 10K, 1-mile and 1/4-mile events will also receive a commemorative 30th anniversary medal.
Meanwhile, the place to be after the run and before the parade will be the “Genesis Red, White and Blues Party” from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., featuring entertainment provided by The Ellis Kell Band, drink specials, and barbecue by Smokey’s Country Diner.
“The Genesis Firecracker Run is a summer classic in the Quad-Cities,’’ said veteran race director Joe Moreno.
“This year will be very special because we’re celebrating 30 years of this event. Everyone who registers will be amazed at what we have in store for them.’’
The race returned to its former glory in 2010 when Moreno, who led the race for 12 years from 1990-2001, returned as race director and Genesis became title sponsor. The run had always been a highlight of the regional racing schedule, however, participation had decreased in recent years. “We brought the fun back to the Firecracker Run, and it will only get better this year,” Moreno said.
He credited the race’s revitalization to a great team of sponsors, including Genesis; a dedicated organizational team; and, the dedicated participants who remained involved in the race even when the race numbers were down.
There are events for every participant, from easy walks on a flat course to competitive 5K and 10K races. There is also a 1/4-mile kids race and a new 10K relay for two-person teams.
The Firecracker 5K and 10K races will start at 7:30 a.m. at the corner of 8th Street and 15th Avenue. There will be musical entertainment along the course; electronic chip timing for near instantaneous results; special tech shirts in men and women’s sizes for race participants; and, trophies to the top finishers in each division. Special awards will go to the first men’s and women’s finishers from East Moline.
The Kiddie Run for kids 8 years and under will be at 8:45 a.m., and the National Bank Mile run/walk at 9:15 a.m. In addition, there will be a Guns ‘N Hoses 5K challenge for teams of current or retired firefighters and police from area departments. Also back this year will be hospital bed races, awards for the best patriotic costumes, and the popular pancake breakfast hosted by the East Moline Fire Department.
The pancake breakfast will be from 7-11 a.m. July 4 at the American Legion Post on 16th Avenue, just a half block from the start/finish line. Proceeds will benefit the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
To register for any of the Genesis Firecracker Run events, go to www.getmeregistered.com or www.firecrackerrun.com.