The 2.5-mile race circled around the Pavilion at Port Orange, and was organized in memory of Nancy Rowan.
Four hundred runners at the Red Solo Kup 4K celebrated good times and did it all while remembering one of their own.
After Nancy Rowan’s unexpected death at the age of 58, Katrina Guevara, owner of Running Elements at the Pavilion, decided to hold the 4K in Rowan’s honor.
“She was passionate about her races, and she put everything into them,” Guevara said. “She wanted to do more than just give people their money’s worth.”
Rowan was a renowned runner and race organizer in the Florida area, and Guevara worked with her original Red Solo Kup 4K event team to keep this year as close to Rowan’s vision as possible.
She was known for raising money for the Children’s Home Society, and leftover race medals were given to sick and critically ill children inscribed with inspirational sayings and words of comfort. She gave approximately 250 medals to children.
Her last race was the Space Coast half-marathon, which was two weeks and a day prior to her death.
“This race is in memory,” Guevara said. “We’d like to thank everyone for supporting Runningal and Red Solo.”
Several sponsors including Kona Ice and State Farm were at the event and a DJ was present to hype up the racers before and after the run.
Fellow runner Tim Neil acted as the event’s emcee, and was encouraging racers as they crossed the finish line. Some were pushing for their best time, others were enjoying the company of their friends and a rare few were strolling their children for the duration of the race.
The course was marked on the ground around the Pavilion at Port Orange with several signs for direction and water stations throughout.
Over 400 runners competed in several different divisions including men’s champion, women’s champion, kid’s champion and then different age groups for each one.
The overall race winner was Joe Matuszczak, who completed the 2.5-mile run in 14:03.