by Dave Warner

No, it’s not that he’s that hungry and has to run to get food, but Rob Richard has decided to put his running skills to work for a good cause.

A few months ago, he read about an ultra runner who ran the length of every street in the city of San Franciso (1,260 miles of them) to raise money for a cause. “It took him a few months as he didn’t do it all at once,” said Richard.

He thought that it would be a fun idea, and Little Falls doesn’t quite have the same number of miles as San Franciso (about 25). “I didn’t really know how many miles we had, I would have guessed twelve. I wrote to the City Engineer (Chester P. Szymanski III) and he told me exactly how many miles there are,” he said.

Richard will have to do several out-and-backs on the dead ends, so some sections will need to be repeated, so the overall mileage may be closer to 30.

“In thinking about doing this, I thought why not try to raise money for a good cause?”

Richard is trying to raise at least $1,000, which will go to the Little Falls Food Pantry, a program of the Little Falls YMCA. “I chose the Food Pantry because food is one of our most basic needs and the fact that some people don’t have access to food or enough food is really a tragedy, so I wanted to help that.”

It’s also a program of the YMCA and Richard said that the Y had been very supportive of all of the races that he has put on with insurance, volunteers and other support. “It really makes those financially possible,” he stated.

“The YMCA has helped us have races that have donated to other non-profits so I thought it was time to give back to the YMCA, and Tony DeLuca thought that would be the perfect program to donate to,” Richard said.

Richard doesn’t have a lot of other big races lined up, as he is taking a break from his structured training. He’s just looking for unique events that are fun and interesting and not dependent on race times, qualifying entry fees and the like.

“One thing that I’m doing is some 5K and 10K’s that are right down the road with no qualifying times. I’m going with friends and just having fun,” he said.

His other idea of fun was to run from his house in Little Falls out to Caroga Lake and the Nick Stoner Inn, sticking to snowmobile trails and any little trail he could find. “I ended up getting lost and had to get picked up near Avery Road, but I had a great time and met friends up at the Inn for drinks afterward.”

The run through Little Falls is going to happen on September 14th and will start at 3 pm. “I should be done hopefully by 8 pm,” said Richard.

A starting point has not yet been determined, but Richard plans to divide the City up into four sections and then concentrate on each section one at a time instead of looking at the entire City.

Richard wants the event to involve everyone on the day of the race. “People can join me for some of it, or all of it. I’d love to have the company,” he said.

He is going to put his planned route out prior to the race so that everyone will know when he’s coming by. “When I come by your location, you could hand me a Utica Club or something.”

If you would like to donate, the minimum is $10 and you can visit his Crowdrise page by clicking here. “Some people have told me that they don’t like to donate online…that they don’t want to put their credit card information out there, so they’ve given me cash, which I will then give to the YMCA when I’m finished.”

You may also go down to the YMCA and give it to someone there and tell them that it is for the run for the food pantry. The pantry distributes holiday baskets on Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas and the services are run by volunteers from the local community and churches.