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Winterport heats things up with Pants on Fire 5K race/walk

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WINTERPORT - Runners will be burning up the pavement in Winterport this Saturday for the town's first ever Pants on Fire 5K Beer Run/Walk and Kids Fun Run. The race is a fundraiser to help the town's all volunteer fire and rescue departments purchase gear and other necessities for the job. Jodi Rapoza-Rowe, owner of Zeke's Dog Retreat in Swanville, is one of the race's sponsors and a participant.

"The volunteer departments around here don't have a lot to work with, so I wanted to get out and show support to help them get the equipment they need," Rapoza-Rowe said. "And I've always wanted to do a 5K. The last couple ones I've signed up for I haven't been able to do because Zeke's has been so busy, so this is the one I've signed up for and am sticking with."

Race Director Kimberly Merrifield is hoping lots of others will be just as fired up about the event too.

"We're hoping for at least 100 participants and the last time I checked over 60 had registered," said Merrifield. "It's just our first year and as an initial goal we'd like to raise $1,500."

Unlike other charity runs across the state, race participants in the Pants on Fire 5k who are over the age of 21 will be eligible to receive two free beers at the finish line courtesy of Penobscot Bay Brewery. Water and granola bars will also be on hand for participants. Those who aren't running the course are encouraged to take part in the chili cook-off between Rosie's, The Bacon Tree, 4Points Barbeque and Governor's restaurant. There will also be live music by Maine musician Everett Dumas.

"We're hoping this will open up Winterport. I feel like a lot of people think it's just a drive-thru town and we hope this will bring people in to see how we've grown," said Merrifield.

All the activities for the Pants on Fire 5K Beer Run/Walk and Kids Fun Run gets underway at 9a.m. Saturday, June 28 at the Winterport Recreation Center. Those interested in registering for the race can do so at Registration is $15 per person leading up to the event or $20 the day of the race.


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