As 2013 draws to a close, Stratford RAW (Runners and Walkers) is beginning a new chapter in its life.
Since the club was founded in 2006, the group has sponsored learn-to-run classes with mentors, held many lively social events, and had countless runs and walks in all kinds of weather.
Now the previously informal group is evolving into a more formally organized club. Recently a meeting was called to invite all interested members to determine the future of the organization.
The purpose of Stratford RAW is to encourage people of all ages to engage in and maintain a regular walking or running habit. Participants acknowledged the importance of working toward specific goals with the help of top-notch education about running and fitness walking.
It was decided at the meeting that Stratford RAW will organize one educational seminar for members each season. Also, members will meet for breakfast on the first Saturday of the month after the morning run or walk. The club plans to connect with Learn to Run courses in the area to offer their “grads” more opportunities to run with people of different paces.
A directory will be developed to help link up walkers and runners. A very important focus was the need to create a Stratford RAW website forum through which RAW members can communicate.
An annual membership fee is $20 and is used for speakers’ fees, advertising, and incidental expenses.
The first seminar will be on Jan. 15 and will feature dietician Julie Houben, who will be speaking about sports nutrition, especially for runners and walkers.
The group is also holding its “Resolution Run” on the last day of 2013. This is a five km run or walk beginning at 4 p.m. at the gates of Upper Queen’s Park. There is no cost to this run but donations to the food bank will be accepted. Register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.