Belpre seeks volunteers for cross country meet

BELPRE — Belpre City Schools is seeking volunteers for the city’s first home cross country meet in more than 40 years.

The Belpre XC Invitational will be held Sept. 15 at the Belpre Civitan Park, with open courses beginning at 8 a.m. and school races beginning at 10 a.m.

More than a dozen teams will compete in the race, and officials say this is the first home cross country invitational since the mid-1970s.

“It’s been a long time since we’ve had a cross country meet, and this one is going to be spectacular,” Superintendent Tony Dunn said at Monday’s Belpre City Schools Board of Education meeting. “Lots of people have been working on this.”

“It’s going to be exciting,” said board member Cathy O’Donnell, whose husband Rod O’Donnell is manager for the event. “We do need volunteers. We could use some able bodies out there.”

Those wishing to volunteer can contact Coach Jenn Wells at 1-740-350-0680 or via email at bc_jwells@belpre.k12.oh.us, Cathy O’Donnell said.

Dunn said Civitan Park and the soccer fields will be an ideal place to watch the races because nearly the whole course will be visible. The races also tend to be relatively fast, so viewers are encouraged to arrive before the races they want to see begin.

Dunn said cross country has the highest participation rate among sports in Belpre City Schools, and officials hope the event will bring customers to area businesses.

“We might have a lot of people from out of town here all day, and they need places to eat and they may shop,” said Belpre City Schools Treasurer Lance Erlwein. “This could be a broad-based win for the area.”

The board Monday also approved more than $6,000 in donations and grants for the meet, including a $5,000 grant from the Belpre Area Community Foundation. Officials said area businesses and organizations have stepped up to donate food, supplies and help.

“Kudos to everyone involved,” Dunn said. “This is going to be a great event.”

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Belpre XC Invitational

What: Belpre High School’s inaugural cross country meet.

Where: Civitan Park in Belpre.

When: Saturday, Sept. 15

* 8 a.m.: Open Race, 5,000 meters

* 9 a.m.: Open Course

* 9:45 a.m.: Coaches’ meeting

* 10 a.m.: High school boys

* 10:40 a.m.: High school girls

* 11:20 a.m.: Junior high boys

* 11:50 a.m.: Junior high girls

* 12:20 p.m.: Elementary race, 3,000 meters

For more information or to volunteer, contact: Coach Jen Wells at 740-538-1202 or bc_jwells@belpre.k12.oh.us; Meet Manager Rod O’Donnell at rrodonnell41@gmail.com; or Belpre High School Athletic Director Stephanie Evans at bc_sevans@belpre.k12.oh.us.

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