Nutcracker races 2012
Twas two days and nights before Christmas!
Solomons Firehouse


The Nutcracker Races 2012
~ the traditional poem*
by Liza Recto

‘Twas Christmas Eve eve, and itching to run
We descended on Dowell for the annual fun
Of choosing a distance to suit our mood,
Followed by prizes, good cheer and good food.

The Idiots Half had proceeded as planned,
They started at dawn! Let’s give them a hand
For running in temps that hung below freezing,
Pounding the roads for no graspable reason.

Tami and crew had marked the route.
With a field small as this, no need for a chute.
Just cones and a clock, and numbered cards;
A grab bag of novelties to serve as awards.

The race was on, and thirty-three pairs of feet
Took off at the gun, down both sides of the street.
Traffic was light, and for that we were grateful.
Who’d want to end up like a venison plateful?

Three chose the mile – John, Peter and Noah.
They drove such long distances, only to toe a
Chalk line on the pavement, then huff and perspire
For just a few minutes with muscles on fire.

Trent Herzog, again, with legs pumping like pistons,
Won the 5K, the most popular distance.
Though not his best time, it was sufficient to win it.
While Turner, in second, trailed by less than a minute.

Next came a foursome of fleet-footed masters.
Paul, Vic, Dave and Scott, those speedy blasters,
Ran 20 and change, kicking dust in the faces
Of Phil, Blaine, and Young Walser, who ran languorous paces.

Robin was next - she won the women’s division.
Jay Wind lagged behind her - in fatigued condition?
He’d run a 5K and several races
Just one day before - he’d been put through his paces.

Triathlete Liz Carroll did rather decently,
Considering her training – she hadn’t run recently.
Then came Jon Palks, in his umpteenth 5K.
How many this year? Over a hundred, you say?

Ten-year-old Emme showed amazing persistence,
As this year she went for a much longer distance.
She held her own and handily led
Julie, Christina, and Jeanne’s antlered head.

This year the four-miler included four jumps.
Trip over the chains and you’d be taking some lumps.
John Way took the lead and held it throughout
No one was close, not within a loud shout.

Karen Young came in second; Mike Fagnano was third,
Despite Gallo-walking. For four miles? Unheard!
Kerry Staats followed, with Liza next by a hair,
Then Kerry’s wife Char – it’s a family affair!

Caitlyn was next, and German at a jog,
Wearing a Camelback – filled with eggnog?
Yet another Staats, Anna, followed by Kirk,
Then Christina and – Perry? Not like him to shirk!

But he’d started at dawn, so we’ll give him a break.
He’s not a big fan of the wee-hour wake.
Gary was last, but not by much.
He’d strayed off course, perhaps just a touch.

We gathered inside to load up on treats –
Cake, brownies, cookies, all manner of sweets.
As we were called to choose prizes, we each took our time.
It was almost like shopping at a town five and dime!

For the Nutcracker races, we thank the family Graf,
Volunteers, helpers, and other race staff.
We love this tradition, we hope we can keep it.
For good cheer and good running, there’s not much that can beat it.

Farewell to oh-twelve! Oh-thirteen will bring – what?
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good nut!
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