U race celebratescampus diversity

Christie Sueker

Buses weren’t running on the University’s Transitway Saturday morning. More than 50 University students, staff and local community members were instead.
Racers were up and running by 8:30 a.m. Saturday, participating in the first annual 5k and 10k Golden Road Run. The race, which began at the Badger Parking Lot, was part of the 1996 University of Minnesota Spring Jam festival. The event celebrates diversity on campus with music, art and food.
“Students wanted to have some type of event to unify both campuses,” said Jeff Stinson, Golden Road spokesman from the St. Paul Department of Recreation. University events usually occur on one campus or the other, but the race was routed to include both. Although fostering University unity was the main purpose of the run, Stinson said it was also a fun way to incorporate fitness into the festival.
All runners started at the parking lot. Taking over the Transitway from the East Bank to St. Paul, racers ran to Como Avenue and then Cleveland Avenue North. While the 5k racers finished their run at the St. Paul Student Center, the 10k runners doubled their route to cross their finish line at the Badger lot.
Gretel Kiefer, who won the women’s 10k race with a time of 49 minutes and 50 seconds, said she enjoyed the experience. “The Golden Road was like the dandelions on the side of the road,” the University employee said.
The first-place winner of the women’s 5k race was University student Mary Rutherford. Bill Berg took first place in the men’s 10k race and University student David Nelson was first in the 5k race.
In the future the run may end in Dinkytown, where most Spring Jam activities take place, Stinson said. Construction prevented the event from ending there this year. “We’re looking to make this run bigger in the future,” he added.