Race Day Recap

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Runners at the start (Photo: John Cummings)

Gerry Sullivan on his way to a first place finish at Run The Farm (Photo: Tom Casper)


We wanted to thank everyone for making the first ever “Run The Farm” trail races by all accounts a big success.

A huge thank you goes out to the staff at Muscoot for accomodating us and getting the farm chores done way earlier than usual for the special day. Many folks did not realize that the staff had to arrive before 5am on Sunday the 24th to make sure the animal traffic on the farm roads was limited to humans!

7-12 Year Old "Kids Run The Farm" Race Heat (Photo: Carol Gordon)

We have an unbelievable team mixed with new and seasoned volunteers that came together and made this event not only possible, but memorable and meaningful as well. We have put together an ad hoc page dedicated to our volunteers here: http://runthefarm.org/volunteers. Take a look and thank them when you get a chance. Apologies if anyone is left out — we will correct it ASAP!

6 and under kids launch for "Kids Run the Farm" second heat (Photo: Rob Cummings)

We have many many photos of the day posted at the website (http://runthefarm.org/photos) and we encourage you to have a look and find yourself and/or your kids during the day.

If anyone has photos they’d like to contribute, please send them to runthefarm@gmail.com.

We’d also like to extend a thank you to the Somers Volunteer Fire Department who sent an EMS team ready to help and who provided aid to a number of people during the morning. We hope everyone is doing well!

A thank you as well to the Westchester County Police for keeping drivers and runners safe on Route 100 during the busy morning.

Deanna Culbreath on her way to the top finish in the women's division. (Photo: Tom Casper)

And finally, the only person who could describe how meaningful Danny Martin is to the Leatherman Harriers events is Danny himself. He is truly one of the healers of the earth.

“Run The Farm!”

-Tony, Judy, Mike, Rob, Dave, and the rest of the Harriers

Please feel free to leave your comments, feedback, questions, and musical critiques in the comment link below.

A number of people have asked about the race blessing given by Danny Martin just before the start of the race.  Here it is below:

In times of uncertainty we need to ground ourselves by getting in touch with the earth:
Running is one way; eating locally is another. Together we can Run The Farm
Let’s begin this grounding process with:

A Blessing for All Earth-Healers

[Response: “Run The Farm”]

For the composters, the gardeners, the breeders of worms, the soil builders:


For those who clean up the messes others have made:


For those who defend trees and renew the forests:


For those who heal the grasslands and renew the streams, who guard the healing herbs and who know the lore of the wild plants:


Blessings on those who heal the cities, who bring them to life again with community gardens and nurture them with community farms:


For all who stand against greed, who risk themselves in service of the earth:


May all the healers of the earth find their own healing


May they bring alive a great awakening:


Today may WE touch the earth and be touched by it. May we ground ourselves in these difficult times as we:


Blessed be the healers of the earth.

22 thoughts on “Race Day Recap

  1. Douglas Sawyer

    Thanks for a great race! Very tough, but beautiful course! I can’t wait for next year! Farmer’s market after totally rocked too!

  2. Matt Genova

    Fantastic course…the weather was great and the hills made it tougher than expected…in fact I never partially walked up a hill – twice – during a run EVER…can’t wait until next year and will definitely bring the kids for their race…

  3. Brian Stempel

    Great day for a great race. Tony and Rob, you two really know how to put on a race. Loved the bagpiper and fiddler, the coupons and coordination with the farmers market was a nice touch, and the the ‘run the farm’ chant was inspiring. Even though it was a bit tough to hear at the back, Danny always does a great job. My oldest daughter loved the kids race. A new family tradition was born today and I have you both to thank for it. Good to see a few Five Fingers out there as well.

    Fellow Five Fingers Fanatic.

  4. Melissa Miller

    Bravo!! Awesome race. You guys left no stones unturned. . .All your hard work paided off. . See you next year.

  5. Larry Katz

    It was a lot of fun. Well organized, challenging route. I’ll make a few suggestions for consideration:
    1. Congestion was a big problem during the race. Have posters on poles at the start where runners of that pace (8:00, 9:00, 10:00) should start.
    2. Most people walked that steep hill at mile 3-4 and it was hard to get around them. Consider a more gradual hill there, maybe switchbacks?
    3. Love the violin and bagpipes but the bagpipes were playing sad tunes when I needed an upbeat pump up.
    4. Loved the pre-race prayer, a lot!!! Made us all feel together in this pursuit with nature.
    5. Love the names on the bibs!
    6. Great weather you ordered up!

  6. Mark

    Thank you for putting together such a wonderful trail race. Everything about the day was perfect. As for the course, I considered it as tough, if not tougher, then the Leatherman. The only thing missing was the water and mud. 

  7. Craig Hoffman

    I had a really great time at the race, and look forward to my kids running next year too!

    It is a great idea to have pace times at the start to prevent some of the congestion.

    I hope you resist the urge to make the course easier. It was a really great trail race, and I look forward to coming back to conquer the sections that killed me during the race. That second hill was killer, but I hope it stays! Maybe present a second, longer but less steep option to clear the tough spots. I remember one rock ledge that was a little spooky – might want to some other support there in case of a fall.

    I thought it was great that there were no gatorades, gu-s, gels to be found. Keep the apple cider, all natural farm fresh foods! I really appreciated the farm bucks. Really cool idea, and I hope the vendors did well! It was great to get to sample the foods like that.

    Perhaps a more definite finish line next year?

    It seemed that everyone I spoke with had a great time and looks forward to next year!

  8. admin Post author

    Larry & Craig – pace time signs are a great idea.

    Possibly for the hill next time a sign at the bottom “Welcome to Godino’s Grind… Walkers on the right; runners on the left” sort of like escalator rules? Farm bucks were a hit.

    Meredith’s Bread got the most Farm Bucks when we cashed them out but other farmers were close behind. We’ll put up tallies and links to their websites where we can get them!

    Finish line was at the timer. The chutes narrow down quickly to keep everyone in finishing order. Next year maybe flags at the finish?

  9. Tom

    Fabulous day and a challenging, technical course. The farm, the farmer’s market and the beautiful fall leaves make this race a great counterpoint to the Leatherman’s Loop. The only suggestion I would make is to run the course in reverse next year, as the first couple of miles once you enter the woods are single track, which made for lots of walking, whereas the last few miles had more room for passing.

  10. Phil

    From a spectator’s perspective: The availability of emergency medical assistance seemed to be lacking. I was located near the bagpiper and early in the race a woman came walking back in need of medical assistance – apparently she had forgotten her inhaler and was having an asthma attack (whether she even should have been participating is a different issue). Anyway, short of calling 911, there was no way to communicate quickly with anybody down below to notify them that a runner required assistance. Fortunately, the bagpiper had driven his car up to his location so it was used to shuttle the runner down, but it could have been a disaster. I also noticed a few runners with twisted ankles who had no choice but to hobble the whole way in. Next year, I would recommend placement of a few volunteers along the course with walkie-talkies to better handle emergencies. Otherwise, it was a great day.

    P.S. The names on the bibs was a great idea as it allowed spectators to provide personal encouragement to the runners which they seemed to enjoy.

  11. Maria Rockoff

    What a magical day it was. Perfect weather, beautiful views, awesome trail. The farmers market was a great way to end the morning. Far bucks worked out great. I can’t wait to do this run again. I loved the blessing and I am thrilled that you have included it in the recap. Thanks you for all the effort put into making this race an enormous success. Peace…..Maria (Ri)

  12. Mark

    I really love this event: a charming farm and preserve, beautiful autumn foliage, great community participation by both runners and non-runners. The course was challenging, especially with the leaves covering the rocks and roots. Runners tended to bunch up in the first part due to the single track, but later spread out better. The music and country market reinforced the wonderful small town community spirit. I look forward to running in this event next year.

    Can we make participants and volunteers more aware of the procedures if a runner is injured?

  13. Britta

    Was a great run and such beautiful weather. Tougher than I had expected but the slow down overlooking the lake allowed me to enjoy the fantastic view! Maybe recommend to farmers market to price items at $5 (maybe smaller pies or cookies or even 3 pickles for $5!!). Definitely will do next year – loved the opening “run the farm” response!

  14. Tony (race director)

    In the near future I will compose a letter which Rob will send out to each of you who ran on Sunday. It will contain my thoughts and feelings about what for me was a fabulous day. I will do my best to respond to your comments. I am grateful to those of you who took the time to share your thoughts. Please keep in mind that absolutely everything about the event was new and untested. Each of you now have the opportunity to help us tighten things up should we decide to stage a repeat performance next Fall. In the mean time please take the time to dwell on Danny’s words from Sunday. Only Danny martin could turn running a farm trail race into a metaphor for our human responsibilities to the planet. We are all in this together and I for one am really enjoying the company.

  15. Paul

    Great race! loved the course and loved the farm market. As to the suggestion for a sign on trail etiquette before the big hill at three miles–There is an impressive HUGE old oak (at least I think it was an oak, in my oxygen deprived condition) just before you turn to start up the hill. Maybe a relative of the fallen tree at the leatherman’s course. I think it needs a name for next year and could hold the sign pointing to Godino’s Grind.
    Great job, Tony, Rob, all the volunteers, and runners.

  16. Paul

    One more thought. It was great to see such an incredable turnout for the kids race. Some race directors would be happy to have those numbers for the adult race. The looks on their faces in the pictures above are wonderful. Just think, in about 10 years (you will still be doing this in 10 years, won’t you Tony?) some of them will be kicking this old butt and winning this race. Events like this can really hook kids on running.

  17. Julia

    Fantastic Day for all! Having everyone racing was inspiring to all and loved that the kids had their own event that made them feel included and special. not all kids can do the main event so this was fabulous for them! Being the proud mom of the winner of the kids DILLON ARYEH (yay!!) I am happy to say that this has inspired him to do more events in the future. Well Done to all the organizers – this was a very special day.

  18. Gerry

    Knowing that Mike, Rob, Judy, Tony and Dave were running the “Run the Farm”, I knew that it was going to be a perfect day. Thanks to Danny for talking to the Great Spirit upstairs and getting us nice weather. The energy and spirit and love that this crew and all their volunteers puts into this and Leatherman’s is something we can all take with us and spread to those around us.
    Peace and thanks!!

  19. Steve

    Fantastic event – thank you so much for putting it together. I haven’t stopped thinking about it since I ran on Sunday. The atmosphere was festive, the foliage was breathtaking, the bagpipes were inspirational, the hills were brutal and the Pickle-icious pickles on a stick at the farmer’s market were delectable. Can’t wait to do it again next year.

  20. Tim Robinson

    It was a fantastic race and very challenging with those monster hills and the narrow trails. I ache in too many places! One thing, is it impossible to get a few reasonably accurate mile markers up in those woods? I would have loved to be able to monitor my pace just a little. Maybe that’s just not done on the trail racing scene, but it’s a thought. Loved this race.

  21. Julia

    Pictures came out great! thanks for sharing – you got whole day perfectly. i encourage anyone else to post theirs as well!

  22. debbie tobias

    Thanks for all your hard work and for putting on an amazing race. It was my first race (and a great excuse to get back into shape) after a 2 year “vacation” after having my daughter. I’ve run the leatherman and this race was just as stupendous and a great place to spend the day with my family.