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10th Annual County Kids of Steel Triathlon – focus on family fun

Bentley and MacPherson family - Krista MacPherson, Mom, Pat Bentley, Grandma with Hannah, Lucas and Jordan MacPherson.

Bentley and MacPherson family – Krista MacPherson, Mom, Pat Bentley, Grandma with Hannah, Lucas and Jordan MacPherson.

The annual County Kids of Steel Triathlon is cooking up a celebration for its 10th year in the County of developing healthy family relationships involving generations in the community.

Hannah MacPherson on the run portion of the triathlon.

Hannah MacPherson on the run portion of the triathlon.

Organizer Michelle Pothier says it’s those generations of participants who play a role in the event that makes it an annual favourite over the past decade.

One of the triathlon’s biggest fans is the Bentley family.

“Mert is 88 and Ruth is 86. They are part of the athletes fan base,” said Pothier. “Fans are the ones that are cheering, supporting, hugging and capturing the great family moments. They witness what the young athletes are up against and see them overcome the challenges. It’s all about building that ‘can do’ character and faith in yourself and sharing in that moment.”

Families are invited on race day Sunday, June 5th to cheer and support the athlethes. The athletes, ages 3 to 17, swim at the Prince Edward Fitness and Aquatic Centre then cycle and run around a protected area through town, back to the finish line at PEFAC.

A few hundred athletes from the County and across the province compete.

The event runs on the power of volunteers.

“It all comes down to experience,” said Pothier. “Pat Bentley, daughter-in-law of Mert and Ruth, and her daughter Krista MacPherson are among the volunteers who make the County Kids of Steel happen.”

Pat has volunteered for all 10 races, drawing on her long history of giving back to the community running track and field events with Bayside Secondary School.

Lucas MacPherson in transition with volunteers, mom, Krista, right, and Tori Morrow, left.

Lucas MacPherson in transition with volunteers, mom, Krista, right, and Tori Morrow, left.

“The results of her efforts and charity grows as the athletes participate, share and help each other meet the challenges of a triathlon. This is her inspiration and why she volunteers and now she has grandchildren participating. It just makes it a very special day for Pat.”

Krista is a six-year veteran volunteer and notes the the event is always welcoming more helpers.

Krista has three athletes participating this year. Hannah, 7, who has five events under her belt; Lucas, 5 and a sophomore, and the rookie this year is Jordan who will be coincidentally turning 3 on race day.

The biggest kick Krista gets, is the day after the race and seeing the pride the kids have as they take their achievement back to school. Her kids wear all the loot from the event’s sponsor goody bags.

“This is the true test of the event,” said Pothier. “Seeing those T-shirts on the buses the next day tells the story that the kids had fun and are proud of what they accomplished. Fantastic! That’s the icing on the cake.”

Free KOS clinics are set for Sunday, May 22nd and 29th at 10 a.m. at the Prince Edward Fitness & Aquatic Centre 132638 Loyalist Parkway.
Everybody is welcom to join the County KOS race crew for a fun- filled review of the importance of the equipment, the transition area, the routes and the finish line. All are welcome.

About 200 volunteers are required at the event and more are needed to sign up for this year. Contact volunteer co-ordinator Krista Macpherson at 613-919-8282 or, visit www.countykidsofsteel.ca

 

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