Girls on the Run Blaze New Trail at Moore

Girl, in pink, runs on new trail.Earlier this semester another chapter of Girls on the Run took off at Moore Elementary. Yesterday they paused to say thanks to someone who put a spring in their steps.

Girls on the Run is a fitness program for girls in grades 3-8 coordinated under the auspices of the YMCA. It culminates with the girls completing a celebratory 5k running event “to unleash confidence through accomplishment while establishing a lifetime appreciation of health and fitness.”

The Moore group of 20+ students and staff was high on enthusiasm but low on facilities. Until Angela Connolly and the Polk County Board of Supervisors came to its rescue. Just after spring break, a walking trail was added to the Moore campus, similar to the one the county underwrote at Hillis Elementary where Moore principal Beth Sloan previously worked.

“It was hard to keep track of our distances before,” said Holly Tucker, who participates in the group with her daughter. “The new trail makes the girls feel special.”

Sixteen laps equate to 3.1 miles, or 5k, and since the trail opened, the GOTR girls at Moore have been putting mileage on it. After school on Thursday, they gathered for a kind of dress rehearsal for the official GOTR 5k on Friday, May 26th at Water Works Park.

Moore parent Erin Haemer solicited Connolly’s help earlier in the year and she came through again, as she had earlier at not only Hillis, but Hanawalt Elementary too, where a running track was installed in 2013.

Connolly was on hand to accept the group’s appreciation before everyone made their 16 rounds.

Sloan also acknowledged Tucker as the de facto “coach” for the group.

“Just remember – keep moving forward,” Tucker told the group after warmups as they took to the trail. “It doesn’t matter if you slow to a walk. The important thing is don’t stop. Keep moving forward.”

And what do you know – the more circles you trace, the further you realize one day you’ve gone.

See more photos of the event.

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