Strawberry Festival kicking off with 5K

Published 4:01 pm Monday, April 7, 2014

By JULIE HARBIN / Community Columnist

The Calera Chamber of Commerce began brainstorming last year about the possibility of adding an attraction to help support the city’s Annual Strawberry Festival. They finally determined that a 5K race would be a perfect complement to the festival, which will be held on Saturday, April 26th at Oliver Park.

A 5K will kick off the annual Calera Strawberry Festival on April 26. (Contributed)

A 5K will kick off the annual Calera Strawberry Festival on April 26. (Contributed)

Calera Chamber members Jeff Purvis and Holly Stanley will be spearheading the event, along with the rest of the Board of Directors. The 5K will benefit the Calera Chamber of Commerce’s Scholarship Fund.

“Every year, the Chamber gives out two $500 scholarships to graduating, college bound seniors from Calera High School,” Purvis said. “The proceeds from the race will benefit this scholarship.”

The Fourth Annual Strawberry Festival will begin at 10 a.m., and the 5K will start just before the Festival at 8:30 a.m. It will be followed by an awards ceremony at 9:40 a.m.

Awards will be given to the top three overall winners (male and female), as well as recognizing age group award winners. All participants will receive a Dri-Fit athletic shirt with registration.

The Chamber has marketed this race on and hopes to have a great turnout for this first time event.

“My goal is to have 100 people participate in the race,” organizer Jeff Purvis said. “You don’t have to be a runner to participate. It is a very flat, easy course. It’s family friendly.”

Race participants can register online in advance at Registration fees are $20 for adults and $10 for a child. Registration is also available the morning of the race, onsite, but fees will increase to $25 and $15, respectively. Packet pick up and day of registration will be at 7:30 a.m. The race will begin and end at Calera High School.

The Fourth Annual Strawberry Festival signals the beginning of the Calera Farmer’s Market’s season. The Festival will feature local farmer, artist and vendor booths. All Alabama grown strawberries will be available, and are the highlight of the event. There will also be food vendors, pony rides and a kid-friendly zone.