Seventy runners and walkers participated in the Office of Nutritional Service’s second annual 5K fun run Thursday starting at Roosevelt Hall. ONS held the run in honor of National Nutrition Month.
Junior Monica Contejean, a dietetic student, said the ONS had more runners than it anticipated.
“I just think people wanted to get out and do something,” she said. “Even though it’s still kind of cold, it’s not as cold as it has been. To be able to get out with a group of people and kind of just walk or run and enjoy the weather, that’s really good. It was a lot of great energy when people walked in.”
Richard Wagner and Kelsey Bercher were the top finishing male and female runners with the times 22.14 and 23.03 respectively.
Shira Starr, a sophomore elementary education major, said she used to run a lot.
“I figured we could get some exercise,” she said. “It’s nice, we got free food [and] free shirts.”
Kyle McAlear, the assistant director of club sports, intramural sports and softball complex rental with the REC/IM, said the REC helped organize the runners and the route. He said they have seen an increase in participants, which is up from last year’s 45 runners.
“It gets the students out, gets the students active,” he said. “I think that helps to foster a good environment for students for learning and for being successful in school.”
Before and after the run, participants could walk around the ONS Open House held in Roosevelt. They could get freebies and information from local vendors and campus organizations.
Junior Corrine Heflinger, a nursing student, was taking runner’s blood pressure and vital signs before and after running with the Student Nurses Association.
“It seems really happening,” she said. “I’ve never been to it before. It seems like a really good turnout.”
Other vendors included the American Heart Association, the Vitamin Store, Peninsular Place and Eden Foods.
“It’s nice to see all these students out promoting physical activity,” said Tara Tomcsic, American Hospital Association corporate events director for Washtenaw County.
Thomas Murray, the executive chef of Eastern Michigan University’s Dinning Services, made smoothies and peanut-butter-balls for the runners. Registered dietitian Kallie Gavorea worked with Murray and explained the benefits of the foods they were serving.