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Classic returns for another run

Runners take off in a mass start format on Main Street in Lake Placid during the 2016 Lake Placid Classic Half Marathon and 10K race.­ (Provided file photo — Roy Bombard)

LAKE PLACID — The 49th edition of the annual Lake Placid Classic Half Marathon and 10K will take place Saturday, Oct. 12.

In 1970, a small group of runners led by Dr. Robert Lopez, a prominent Saranac Lake veterinarian, began a marathon and half-marathon race originally run from Saranac Lake to Lake Placid. In 1983, the event was taken over by Butch Martin and the North Elba Park District who continued the fall tradition running the half-marathon on local roads.

In 2012, after budget restrictions forced the parks department to forego its lead sponsorship, a small group of local volunteers took over the management of the event, changing the name to The Lake Placid Classic.

This year’s race will begin at 8 a.m. in front of the Olympic Speedskating Oval in Lake Placid and finsih at the North Elba Show Grounds.

The Lake Placid Classic is one of the only not-for-profit running/walking events in the Lake Placid area. The goal of the event organizers is to raise funds for local youth organizations. Over the past several years, it has become the vital fundraisers for the local Connecting Youth and Community (CYC) of Lake Placid and Wilmington.

CYC is a not-for-profit, youth development organization made up of local community leaders, youth, parents and business partners. Their mission is to promote positive youth development.

An additional beneficiary of the Lake Placid Classic is the Fit for Life scholarship fund, which provides financial support for patient participation in Adirondack Health’s supervised exercise program, as well as member scholarships at the medical fitness center in Lake Placid.

The event has steadily grown, with more than 650 participants joining the fun in 2018. Over the last six years, the Lake Placid Classic has donated more than $30,000 to local youth organizations. Runners from across the United States and Canada registered for last year’s race. More than 50 volunteers — mostly local students — staff aid stations and the start and finish areas.

Community support has grown for this event with more than 19 business involved, including primary sponsors Long Run Wealth, The Fallen Arch and Adirondack Health. For additional information or to register for this event, go to LakePlacidClassic.com.