Thursday night, we had the 6th? annual TATUR Christmas party. It was a fun evening with food, friends, awards, and good times.
Elmer's BBQ catered the event, and the grub was superb. Throw in all the pies, cakes, cookies, meet and cheese trays, and casseroles, it was feaster's delight.
Brian made a few announcements, and then handed off the emcee duties to Stormy, who has the gift. Stormy, Edward, and I took turns passing out the coveted Silver Spud Awards, given for exceptional performances to exceptional people in the TATUR club.
Some go to people who are just plain fast, some who are tough, some who are amazing in the way they help and are behind the scenes superstars.
Bailey earned Rookie of the Year. She has been a great up and coming runner for a few years, but is taming the trailz here lately. Her first actual trail race was the Turkey and TATURs 10K, a race where she was crazy nervous about running, and then settled in and took 3rd female overall, and of course won her age group. She's just 14, and will no doubt walking away with lots of trophies in the years to come. I was delighted to see her win this!!
Danielle won Most Beat-Up Feet. This goes to a runner who runs a LOT of races, or just a lot of miles in races or in training, OR to someone who simply has hamburger feet. Danielle fits in all categories, running her first 50 miler at the Midnight Madness, and then training her hiney off getting ready for her 1st 100 miler at Mark Twain. She ran there in super tough conditions, and had some injurious probs and dropped about half way through. She then toed the line at Pumpkin Holler and toughed out 60 miles or so before nausea and chills stopped her race. She will be back this next year at Prairie Spirit, where I believe she'll nail her first finish.
I did not get a lot of pictures at the party, and most of the ones here are borrowed. My Canon is on the blink, and iPhone does not do all that good indoors at night. The pic I took of Russell was edited to tone down the glowing eyes.
No one was more deserving of any award than Russell. He has yet to have a DNF in any race he has done, and this year, he aced his first 50 at Rocky Raccoon, then toughed out another super hard 50 at Angel Fire. Throw in Midnight Madness, and then FlatRock, and that would have been a great year. But NO! The Iron Horse then did his first 100 at Pumpkin Holler, and made it look easy, other than having mangled feet, and passing out near his tent after the race. Congrats for taking top honors, Russ.
Wes Rupell won Most Improved TATUR. Wes steadily upped his miles all year long, yet I was surprised to see him entering the 100 at Pumpkin. But somehow, I still believed he would take a laid back approach to it and get in just under the wire. Funny thing though, he stayed with Christy, who set a gutsy pace early on, and basically maintained all day and all night. WTG Wes!!
Mitch Drummond won the Spirit of TATUR award. Mitch is like a worker bee--going everywhere and doing everything. He is a super volunteer/helper/aid station worker/crew dude/pacer, and runner. Mitch sets water out at most of the RunnersWorld training runs, often runs with the TOTs and handles the caboose roll in our train of runners. Mitch manned the Famous Waffle Stop aid station at Pumpkin Holler, which this year serviced the 100 milers on their early out-and-back, and then the 25Kers during their race. After all that, he paced a runner who he had never met in the 2nd lap of her 100K, earning a 50K finish even though it meant his gun time was 20+ hours because of his late start. Mitch is just that way--always giving and never selfish. Mitch declared Friday "Take Your Silver Spud to Work Day," as well he should.
Christy won Female TATUR of the Year. Again, it was easy to decide who would win that honor. She is an overachiever, exceeding everything I thought she was capable of. She made her first 100 seem easy--taking third place female at the Pumpkin Holler Hunnerd. Throw in some insane training all year, and good finishes at Turkey and TATURs, Snake Run, Lake McMurtry, Midnight Madness, and actually winning a couple of shorter road races, I'd call it a stellar year.
Mike Adams was awarded Best Performance in a Race, by winning Pumpkin Holler Hunnerd. To me, this was impressive for a lot of reasons. First, he was so laid back and relaxed about his plans the day before the race. It seemed like he was merely there for an easy 10 miler. He told me he was just gonna take it easy for a couple of laps and then see if he had any gas in the tank. Mike was in 2nd place to Nick Seymour for two laps, laying about 8-10 minutes behind him. But midway through the last lap, Mike made his move. Nick was slowing down just a little--not much--but was taking a little extra time at the aid stations. Mike charged right through East of Eden, and just ran away wit the race. Mike set the course record, and also set a nice PR for himself. I wish Mike hada been here, but we'll get his Silver Spud to him.
Susan Westmoreland was awarded Most Inspirational TATUR. Susan is always willing to do the aid station thing, and she helped immensely in race preparation, packing, setting up, cooking food, then crewing. She also made some super signs for us at our races, and makes Ultrarunner superfood--mint brownies.--to die for!!
Shorty was also recognized for her awesome help in course marking, packet pickup help, race timing, and lots of other volunteer needs.
John Nobles was recognized for his unselfish help in pacing Rebecca Flourney her third lap at Pumpkin Holler. John kept her rolling to a first place finish.
Silver Spuds know how to have fun!!!
Special thanks to the Westport Apts for letting us use their clubhouse. Nest year--do not miss this party!!