Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Real Honor

Lowell High School held its annual National Honor Society induction ceremony this week, and there were a couple of familiar faces crossing the stage. Specifically, two second-generation E-Streeters, Andrew and DJ.
The two LHS seniors were inducted for the second year running, a worthy nod to their hard work and sweat on the academic front, not to mention their stellar seasons on the Cross Country and Field Hockey teams.
For anyone who knew their fathers in high school, cue the stories to contrast the differences in notoriety between a decade or three.
The stars of the night:
I mean seriously, to anyone who knew these two clowns in high school - did you ever think they'd be two guys who would raise a couple of NHS stars?
Proud parents with their NHS-er
And some more proud parents and sis with THEIR NHS-er

Great job guys, we're proud all around! Onward and upward!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Top Bananas

So this morning was the second No Bananas race along the Bruce Freeman Trail in Chelmsford. A 3.1 mile out-and-back course, this race series is the brainchild of Ruth Whalen-Crockett, whose husband Jonathan is the fitness fireball at Middlesex Community College. The once-a-month race features no tee-shirt giveaways, no clocks at the mile splits, and no drinks or bananas at race's end. For now, at least.

A cold start to the morning but things warmed up pretty quickly. After a thrilling start, Jonathan takes the lead, carrying the banana trophy to be placed at the halfway point. It's not too often you'll see a photo like this.
And hopefully, the last time, you'll ever see a photo like this:
Always discouraging when the leader in the race passes you while you're still en route to the halfway point:
But the racing series still gets the thumbs up from the E Streeters:
The star of a the show, an appealing fellow:
A photo finish, the race organizer graciously pulls up so as not to foster any ill will:
The post-race glow is obvious on this bunch of finishers. Here's the top 10 finishers of today's outing:
And for the documentarians among us, here's the GPS map and the course elevation map for future references. Photos and map courtesy of race cartographer and photographer John Piekos. Nice job, Ruth, see everyone in January!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Rowdy with a Very Good Chance of Meatballs

Great day running a 3.5 mile XC race along the Andover Country Club. Andrew, John and I were the trio representing the E-Streeters today, and we did the team proud. While I wasn't first across the finish line, I WAS the first getting a plate at the unparalleled feedbag afterwards.

In its 31st year, this race cannot be beat, both for the price ($20 registration comes complete with running gloves) the course, along the rolling and rolling golf course hills, and the pasta dinner waiting for you at race's end. Results were posted with minutes of the race's end, plenty of beer and beverages on tap, and a banner day of weather make this one of the don't-miss races of the running calendar.

This year's race featured an added bonus, as John ran with his electronic goomah, which collected GPS coordinates all along the course. Here's a satellite view of the course:
Andrew, waiting for the start, but thinking about the pasta dinner
Sizing up his competition, he knows he can easily out-eat these posers
Here's John, sidestepping goose poop, but dressed to hunt them
Thumb's up for knowing where the camera is always located
About the only time John can be found in the center of a golf course fairway:
And of course, the obligatory finish line line-up
And as promised, here's Andrew at the main event, giving instructions to his servers, who nearly let the meatballs touch his salad
One side note, beware of toppled chairs, their legs can cause significant problems for men carrying platefuls of food, as John (who is occasionally mistaken for Barry) can deftly attest to.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Return of the Turkeys

Great time had by all at this morning's Thanks4giving race in Lowell to benefit Alternative House. As you can see from the group shot, the E Streeters were well represented, grabbing not only top places in the 5K and 10K legs, but apple pies as well!

Here's Scott, refusing to get girled
Carlos, with the thumbs up, or perhaps jumping rope
Taking it in stride
Beating the walkers
The scientist, all smiles

If Scott isn't going to get girled, Tommy sure isn't either

This is the photo of Barry that we COULD use on a family blog

Father daughter tandem

And the father-son combo
Some folks would be content with getting one pie

Once again, thankful that everyone is here for another year of healthy racing, good times and family fun at E Streeter race outings. Thanks, too, to the support team families that come out for all of the races to cheer us in!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Dashing Monsters

A bit late, but we can't let the monster efforts of all seven of our teams go unnoticed in this year's Monster Dash duathlon! A combination of E-Streeters and Middlesex Community College's extended family, we threw seven teams into the mix at the Lowell Elks, with three of the teams coming away with prize-placing finishes!

A terrific family event, thanks in great part to all of our supporters, dogs and all!

Here's the motley crew, pre-race:

Father and son zombies:And yes, zombies can run fast (and scarily)Gina heads for the finish (of lap one)
Spider-Man breaks the cardinal rule of super-heroing, taking off her mask in public
Pumpkin-Man, sans pumpkin (and even on crutches, Heather is there to cheer)
A herculean effort by a beer bottle
Marc stops traffic wherever he goes Donna still finds the energy to give the thumb's up:
Some of our loudest supporters:
Brady ready to take on the big dog
And the scary aftermath:

Sunday, October 24, 2010

A Father-Daughter Dance

Got my beautiful girl out for a really fun 5K that roamed throughout the Highlands neighborhood today.

Here we are at the start, at Mt. Pleasant golf course, before Heather was annoyed with her father's incessant on-course coaching.Kudos to the Martin family, for pulling in a fantastic crowd for this first-ever race, in honor of Jimmy Martin, who passed away 15 years ago from cancer. All profits go toward the James S. Martin Scholarship Fund at Lowell High School, which is given annually to a Lowell High School senior with financial need who has participated in Highlands baseball, basketball or softball.

Making an extra-special debut along the course today was unofficial race photographer John Piekos, who ran the entire thing armed with his camera, taking not only award-winning photos, but neat videos to boot!
Running past the apartment where it all started for Jackie and I:Early on, through Tyler Park:Making the rounds on Pine Street:Booking our way up Parker Street:Surprisingly, Heather is still smiling, probably because we're running past her school while it's closed:A raucous water stop, courtesy of the Lowell High XC team, with Andrew front and center, and Congresswoman Niki Tsongas! An interesting combination, and an inspirational team effort outside Jim Martin's former home:The smiles are gone, but still the race continues:Much like life, there's the occasional uphill. Here's Heather digging deep:Passing her Chelmsford rival in the background:And the finish, up the steepest hill on the entire course!
The post-race party, waiting for the super soups:Great job, Heather! Onward and upward!