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Running for Camp Webb and the Kids of Kentucky

May 26, 2015
By

By Chris Erwin

There was a time in Kentucky when parents and officials alike felt that the principles of conservation were so important that Fish & Game Officers visited elementary schools. Their purpose was to spark an interest in our kids and to teach them that our heritage hinges on the love of nature and the beauty it brings to our lives. This symbiotic relationship that we all share will only live on if we teach it to the next generation.

Today the dream still lives. Those who continue to foster the reality that our future is in our youth nurture it and only by educating them can we pass down our rich outdoor heritage.

Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Commissioner Greg Johnson and two of our local Fish and Game officers helped in security during the 5K race. (photo by Chris Erwin)

Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Commissioner Greg Johnson and two of our local Fish and Game officers helped in security during the 5K race. (photo by Chris Erwin)

Kentucky has been blessed with people who have dedicated their whole lives to making the dream live on. One of those people was Robert “Doc” C. Webb. For 32 years he served as the 8th District Wildlife Commissioner. He was the longest serving commissioner, and was reappointed under nine governors both Democrat and Republican. While his legacy spans much further than just Camp Webb, it is this learning center that was supported by events on Saturday.

The love of the outdoors was passed down from Doc Webb to his daughter Senator Robin Webb. She has carried on his dream of promoting and expanding the opportunities the state of Kentucky can provide to its residents; including educating our youth about conservation.

overall_winersKentucky has three conservation camps, and they span across the state but Saturday it was all about Camp Webb located on Grayson Lake where Senator Webb along with Kentucky State Wildlife Commissioner Greg Johnson hosted a 5K run to support Camp Webb. The money raised will be used to provide scholarships to underprivileged kids.

This is the second year that this event has helped support Camp Webb and children who might otherwise never have the chance to learn about our outdoor opportunities. The race cost $18 for pre-registered runners and $25 dollars for those who signed up the day of the race.

More than 70 runners were signed in and ready to go moments before the race started. Runners ran from the entrance to the front of the KYOVA Mall, out to the outer rim of the paved parking lot, and then made three laps around the perimeter.

Some of the volunteers that help make the 5K run possible. Thank you for your service! (Photo by Chris Erwin)

Some of the volunteers that help make the 5K run possible. Thank you for your service! (Photo by Chris Erwin)

Staff tore off one of three tabs on their numbered vest as they made each lap. The last lap sent them back to the starting point where their times were recorded, and last tab was retrieved.

This race was broken down into age groups and gender, so they were a lot of first, second and third place finishers. However, I wanted to give coverage to the overall winners in both gender categories.

It’s also noteworthy to say they were a lot of volunteers, and while I can’t show all the pictures I took, I will try to post more of them in Kentucky Angling News Magazine.

The fastest time came in at 18 minutes and 51 seconds, and that honor went to Ryan Smith. I can tell you this guy can run! Runners Chris Ellwick and Anthony Fraley also came in just before the overall winner in the female division, which was Tammy Black.

Medals and trophies were awarded in age groups and gender along with medals for runners who ran for the first time. I was surprised at just how many people finished this race. I think it safe to say it was a complete success.

I had a long talk with Senator Webb much of which I hope to share with you in a subsequent article. I am convinced that she is working on problems and law that we all need to know more about! Her unrelenting hard work in the world of the outdoors is both appreciated and needed.

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