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Locals, families, and kids take off at the start of the two mile race in Redwood Park. | Erin Chessin
Locals, families, and kids take off at the start of the two mile race in Redwood Park. | Erin Chessin

Slippery slopes at the Arcata Community Forest Run


By | Erin Chessin

Runners were lucky enough to experience dry conditions and no weather delays at the Arcata Community Forest Run hosted by the Six Rivers Running Club on March 26.

Many competed in either a 2-mile race or a 5.5-mile race at 10 a.m. that day. The course started and ended at Redwood Park and took runners on a journey through the redwoods. Runners were challenged with steep, muddy hills due to consistent rainfall over the past couple of weeks.

The Six Rivers Running Club arranges and hosts races in the most scenic areas of Humboldt County. The club strives to encourage locals and adolescents to run competitively and noncompetitively as a community.

The race director and Mckinleyville resident, Matthew Kidwell, said the meet went well overall despite the precarious slippery, steep hills.

“People were slipping on the downhills, thankfully no one was injured,” Kidwell said.

Kidwell is a long distance runner for the Six Rivers Running Club and has been a meet director of the club’s various events for over four years. He will be competing in the Boston Marathon in three weeks.

The Arcata Community Forest Run course map, found on the Six Rivers Running Club’s website at | Erin Chessin
The Arcata Community Forest Run course map, found on the Six Rivers Running Club’s website at | Erin Chessin

Kidwell knew rain was not going to be a problem at the event because he is also a meteorologist.

“I work for the National Weather Service,” Kidwell said. “So I was semi-confident that the rain would hold off for the run.”

In the men’s division of the 5.5-mile race, Aaron Campbell placed first at less than 36 minutes, followed by Jasper Severn and Ben Davenport.

“It’s a great course. The hills are tough, but I ran a personal best today,”Davenport said. Davenport is an active member of the Six Rivers Running Club. He is a long distance runner for the club who competes in anywhere from 5-mile races up to marathons.

Tami Beall was the first woman to cross the line at almost 42 and a half minutes, followed by Kristal Mendez and Ivy Price.

There were some standout youth in the 2-mile race. In the boy’s division, Mathias Severn finished in first just above 14 minutes, followed by Everett Halikas and Ian Letts.

People of all ages competed in the Arcata Community Forest Run. Sheri Culver, 52, was the first woman to finish in the 2-mile event at almost 17 minutes, followed by Annie Lanning who was only 9 years old, and Iris Mohany.

Retired Chief of Police for the Humboldt State University, Tom Dewey, was first in his age division for the 5.5-mile race.

“The race was a hard one but a good one,” Dewey said.

Dewey is also a member of the Six Rivers Running Club.

Members of the Six Rivers Running Club often participate or compete in the Six Rivers Running Club Circuit, which comprises of six signature races. The Avenue of the Giants Marathon and the Humboldt Redwoods Marathon are the club’s most well known races, both of which attract various runners from all over the country.

The club hosts dozens of races all year around and welcomes Humboldt County residents and people of all ages to compete.

Race results and photos can be found at the Six Rivers Running Club’s website. Registration and information about upcoming races in Humboldt County can also be found on the club’s website.

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