More than 500 adults and children celebrated Mother’s Day as they returned for the 2023 Miss Miles fun walk and run in New Glasgow on Sunday.
The annual all-female event the YMCA of Pictou County hosted started and finished at Glasgow Square and featured participants of all ages, some with young people in strollers and carriages, and others walking and running their dogs.
Marla Sim, who has become race director for the four Johnny Miles series of events, said it was another popular Miss Miles that has begun this year’s series. The other events are the Johnny Miles Running Event Weekend in June, and the Run for the Lobster and Melmerby Triathlon in July.
The total of approximately 550 entries was slightly more than last year, said Sim, who drew a comparison between the non-competitive nature of the Miss Miles and the other competitions.
“It’s a nice way to start the season,” she said. “It was fun, relaxing. It’s nice to get back together with them.”
A wide variety of people participated. Marcia Cyr brought her dog, Zeke, with her along the course that crossed the George Street Bridge before more welcome shelter from the cool breeze on the town’s west side.
“I’m trying to get him more socialized,” she said about Zeke.
Frances Sutherland of River John will turn 92 in June and has participated in previous Johnny Miles events.
“I was here last year,” she said. “I planned all along to be here this year.”
A trio of women – Kris Henderson, Dawna Crockett and Tanya Hirtle – returned with a new form of head dress they call fascinators.
“I make them,” said Henderson, who has demonstrated an ability to keep them different each time.
“Every year, they’re different,” Crockett said. “They’re fun.”
“It’s always a surprise,” Hirtle added.
Sarah Corbin brought her daughter, Maren, to push along the route. She was joined by her sister, Lisa McGrath.
“It’s the first time with Maren and the first time for Lisa and I,” Corbin said.
Angela Fogarty was among the first to return from the walk and run. She said she appreciates how organizers have ensured an all-female fun event for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy.
“This Mother’s Day run is one of the only ones that is not competitive,” she said. “It’s not just mothers who get to take part. This is my favourite event, and I’m competitive.”
She said the Miss Miles is a welcome opportunity for reacquainting with others after a long winter and slow spring.
“Sometimes, you need to take a step back, to make connections you haven’t seen in so long,” she said. “It’s great to see everybody out.”
Sim said the Miss Miles is one way for the local Y to encourage membership by profiling itself in the area.
“Our involvement in the community helps us to be better represented in the community,” she said. “We bring more members into the YMCA.”
The running event weekend is culminated by a series of road races on Father’s Day, June 18. The Run for the Lobster coincides with the annual Pictou Lobster Carnival and is scheduled for July 9. The triathlon will begin at 8:30 a.m. on July 16 at Melmerby Beach.
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