The Petit Road Race is Next Weekend

Posted: Friday, July 10, 2015 2:32 pm

PLAINVILLE—— The 8th annual GE 5K Road Race returns to Plainville July 19. All proceeds benefit the Petit Family Foundation, a non-profit whose mission is to help the education of young people, help those affected by chronic illness and help and protect those affected by violence.

The 5K race will begin on East Street near the intersection with Maple Street and finish on Woodford Avenue. Those who can’t handle the run but still wish to support the foundation can also participate in a 2 mile Fitness Walk that day. Registration will be held from 7 to 8:30 a.m. This will be followed by a short Kids’ Fun Race for children under 8-years-old before the main run/walk starts at 9 a.m. There will be two water stations during the race. Post-race activities include a raffle, music, food and beverages.

The Petit Family Foundation was established to honor the memories of Jennifer Hawke- Petit and her daughters, Hayley and Michaela Petit, who were murdered during a home invasion of their Cheshire home in 2007. Dr. William Petit has stated on that he wishes to continue the “kindness, idealism and activism” that defined the lives of his family. Hayley and later on Michaela, the website states, were dedicated to community service and charitable giving, especially with the MS Society. Their mother Jennifer Hawke-Petit suffered from the illness.

Last year, more than 1,600 runners and walkers helped raise $115,000 for the Petit Family Foundation. Since the race began, GE has helped raise a total of $1 million for the non-profit organization. The annual road race was started two brothers, Robert and Gary Heslin, who went to school with William Petit at Plainville High School. All three graduated in 1974 and ran cross-country and track and field.

In 2010 GE took its sponsorship to the next level, hosting a pasta dinner the night before the race. Held outside its Plainville site, the GE Pasta Dinner brings together families in the local community for an evening of food, entertainment, games, prizes and other carnival favorites, with all ticket proceeds benefiting the foundation. Last year, the pasta dinner raised an additional $3,600 for the foundation.

This year, there will be a Team Pledge Competition. Cash pledges will be collected by designated team captains at pre-registered bib pick-ups. Donations can also be made online at Participants are encouraged to bring a list of names and dollar amounts pledged directly in support of their team. The Team Pledge Competition winners will be posted on following the race.