Gearing up to run for the sake of youth fitness

The start of last year's 5K in Southold. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder, file)
The start of last year’s 5K in Southold. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder, file)

This Saturday you can do some running to stay in shape and help kids stay in shape, too.

The Southold Athletic Association is hosting its annual 5K & Fun Run, which has helped fund a number of health and wellness initiatives within the Southold School District over the past few years. 

Nearly 300 people crossed the finish line at last year’s event, helping to raise enough funding for a new elementary school playground, said Southold gym teacher Peter Salerno.

“I would like to thank all the community members that have participated and have sponsored us over the years. We raised over $40,000 over the past five years, and I don’t know that we would be able to get stuff like this without that support,” Mr. Salerno said. “This is stuff that is a little extraordinary and would be difficult to acquire without the [fundraiser].”

Money raised by past runs has also gone toward four 47-inch television screens, four Wii consoles and 16 remote controls to help keep kids active during recess in the winter months, he said. It has also enabled the school to purchase new climbing equipment.

Saturday’s run starts at Southold Elementary School at 9 a.m.

All runners and walkers must check-in between 7:30 and 8:45 a.m. at the elementary school gymnasium.

“I hope everyone can make it out,” Mr. Salerno said.

All participants are asked to bring a non-perishable food item for donation. To register and get more information visit

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