Warrior Waddle to support track and field and cross country

Allison Mueller

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Ben Strand/ Winonan

Winona State University’s women’s track and field and cross country teams are getting ready for the annual Warrior Waddle 5k around Lake Winona.

The race will take place on Oct. 25, and this will be the seventh year the 5k has been held.

Tom Slaggie and Kathy Hovell started the Warrior Waddle 5k to help raise scholarship money for the women’s track and field and cross country teams.

Mason Rebarchek, head coach of Winona State’s women’s track and field team, said Slaggie and Hovell have good backgrounds with putting on 5ks.

“Besides putting on the Warrior Waddle for several years, I know they help run a couple other 5ks as well, like the Steamboat Stumble,” Rebarchek said.

Rebarchek emphasized the impact of being able to raise scholarship money for the athletes and the importance of this event. “The impact is immeasurable,” Rebarchek said, “At least four teams in our conference are fully funded, and we aren’t one of them. The money we raise helps us be more competitive in our league.”

Rebarchek said around 40 volunteers from the track and field and cross country teams are needed to help make the event run smoothly.

“The girls get up at 7 a.m. on homecoming day when it’s pretty chilly out,” Rebarchek said, “but they know the importance of their help, and they work hard to make sure the event is a success.”

Sydney McCarthey, a junior cross country runner at Winona State, said volunteering for the event was a great experience last year.

“It was fun to get together with my teammates and watch people run for fun and cheer them through it,” McCarthey said.

Volunteers have several different jobs to do for the 5k, including giving participants water, motivating them and making sure they stay on the course, McCarthey said.

The race has grown immensely since it first started, and Rebarchek said he is excited to see what the turnout will be like this year.

The 5k is open to the public, and participants can register for the race up until the morning of the race.

The cost of the race is $15 per person for group registration and $20 per person individually prior to the race. The price will raise to $20 for individuals and $25 for groups on Oct. 20.