By Halle Thornton
50th Space Wing Public Affairs
SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — More than 100 Team Schriever Airmen participated in the annual St. Paddy’s Day 2.5-mile fun run March 14, beginning and ending outside the fitness center.
First Lt. Nicholas Ruiz, executive officer with the 50th Mission Support Group, finished first for the males with a time of 15:04, while 2nd Lt. Veronica Leddy, operations engineering chief with the 50th Civil Engineer Squadron, finished with a time of 16:27 for the females.
Staff Sgt. Christopher Anderson, 50th CES, took second with a time of 15:38, and 1st Lt. Felicia Sturgeon, director of operations with the 1st Space Operations Squadron, came in second for the females with a time of 19:48.
Mark Schuette, assistant fitness and sports manager with the 50th Force Support Squadron, said the fitness center has hosted the run since 2009.
“I think the best part about the St. Paddy’s Day run is it creates an opportunity for the Schriever AFB community to get out of the office, meet people from other organizations and get some exercise,” he said. “The level of support and camaraderie the participants display for each other every year makes the St. Paddy’s Day run worth more than its weight in a pot of gold.”
This was Ruiz’s third year participating in the fun run and he notices the number of participants increases each time.
“I think people run so they can get a sweet t-shirt,” he said. “My favorite part of the event is finishing of the run and then heckling friends and coworkers afterwards.”
Ruiz participates in the other fitness center running events and appreciates the work the fitness center staff does.
“They are the ones who create the fun atmosphere that keeps everyone coming back,” he said. “They do all of the work behind the scenes from establishing the date, advertising, getting gift cards for participants, set up/teardown to include cones, chalk arrows for directions and hydrations stations. They also cheer people on at every event and I always make it a point to say thank you to everyone involved in the whole process.”
Unlike Ruiz, this was Leddy’s first time participating in the fun run.
“My favorite part about the event was getting out there and running with everyone else that comes out,” she said. “Plus I love the free t-shirt and the fact that the fitness center puts on such a great event without having a fee to participate.”
Although Leddy thought the dirt running path used for the course was a challenge, she appreciated the time allotted to run with her fellow Airmen.
“It’s awesome to be able to zone out a bit and race with a pack of people all pushing each other to do their best,” she said.
Leddy participates in other fitness center runs like the Zoo Zoom run, half marathon and the turkey trot.
“I think the fitness center is wonderful at bringing the Schriever community together,” she said. “The staff is so knowledgeable and they always have an encouraging attitude. The events are great, the t-shirts are awesome and the prizes are better than even some downtown races and events.”
“I love the convenience and the competition of all the events (intramurals, runs, etc.) the fitness center puts on,” she said. “It allows me to feel kind of athletic even though I mostly sit at a desk all day.”
For more information about upcoming fitness center events, contact the fitness center at 567-6628.
The current Commander’s Cup standings are as follows:
First place: 4th Space Operations Squadron, 405 points
Second place: 50th Wing Staff Agencies, 395 points
Third place: 1st Space Operations Squadron and 50th Civil Engineer Squadron, 285 points
Fourth place: 50th Operations support Squadron, 200 points
Fifth place: 2nd Space Operations Squadron and 50th Security Forces Squadron, 150 points