Valdosta Daily Times

Top Sports News

July 5, 2014

Let Freedom Run

Ninth annual Valdosta 5K celebrates Independence Day

VALDOSTA — Fireworks and family barbecues have become the common way for Americans to celebrate the day the United States separated from England, but over the past nine years citizens of Valdosta have developed another Independence Day tradition: the annual Valdosta 5K.

"Well, this is Valdosta, Ga., home of Moody Air Force Base and I feel very strongly that this community embraces our veterans," said race coordinator Todd Smoot.

Smoot began overseeing the Valdosta 5K as a way to give back to Lowndes County's veterans, a mission that has been a smashing success.

"I come from a city, Atlanta, that has a rather large road race on Independence Day and I liked how that was conceived and has been running. I wanted to do something here and the logical beneficiary of the event would be the veterans of Lowndes County," said Smoot. "In 2006 we started the event with the Baytree for a couple of years and we've just progressed and now it's starting and finishing at the American Legion which really makes sense. We've been able to give over $18,500 to the veterans over that period of time and we'll be giving more (Friday).

"Prior to that the veterans, I don't believe, had a bank account to help Lowndes County veterans."

On Friday, the Valdosta 5K had a new course from previous years.

Runners gathered in front of the American Legion Post 13 on Williams Street at 7:30 a.m. to begin the 5K. The course cut across Patterson twice as it circled back to the finish line outside the American Legion.

Lowndes cross country runner Chance Roe finished first overall with a time of 17:35, just edging out Dylan Rodgers by .03 seconds.

All the proceeds from the Valdosta 5K go to the Lowndes Veteran Council, but Smoot also wants to push the community to remember the importance of the day.

"I like how our community supports the (Valdosta 5K), and I really want to make certain that we understand that this is not July 4th, it's Independence Day," said Smoot. "I don't call it July 4th, we must remember this is our Independence Day and what that means."

Text Only
Top Sports News
  • 150723-Lowndes_Brooks5.jpg Winding Down

    In its final 7-on-7 test of the summer, Randy McPherson was pleased with how the Lowndes football team looked Wednesday morning.
    Brooks County coach Maurice Freeman, on the other hand, was worried about the kind of hole the Trojans would have dug for themselves at Martin Stadium against the Vikings and Lafayette (Fla.) had it been a real game.

    July 24, 2014 3 Photos

  • Grable signs with Tampa Bay

    Another former Valdosta State football player joined the ranks of the National Football League when linebacker Jeremy Grable signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Wednesday morning.

    July 23, 2014

  • MaryAlice.jpg Just Keep Running

    Forrest Gump once said, "I used to run to get to where I was going, but I never thought it would take me anywhere." In the case of 18 year-old Mary Alice Smoot, anywhere is Tampa, Fla.
    After four years of unparalleled success running cross-country at Valwood, Smoot will continue running competitively next season at the University of Tampa.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • 10U ELITE World Series Champs.jpg DKSA Elite win USSSA Global World Series

    DKSA ELITE just continues to win, the 10U team’s latest victory came in the USSSA Global World Series held in Destin, Fla. July 8-12.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Valwood.jpg A Different Look

    With football summer workouts in full swing, occasionally the intensity and competitive drive can wane going against teammates. But on Friday, Valwood, Brookwood, Lanier County and Tiftarea Academy broke up the monotony by meeting at Goddard Field for a four-team, 7-on-7 passing league.

    July 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • pilcher.jpg Berrien competes in 6-team passing camp

    If Ed Pilcher had his way, Berrien High would never throw the football.
    But that doesn't mean the veteran coach doesn't enjoy the opportunity that a passing league, or the six-team passing camp at Cairo on Thursday morning, can provide his Rebels.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bubba Walker promoted to defensive coordinator

    Valdosta State Linebacker Coach Bubba Walker has been promoted to fill the open posiiton of defensive coordinator for the Blazer football team according to an announcement made by VSU Head Coach David Dean Thursday.

    July 18, 2014

  • Albritton wins NCAA Elite 89

    Courtney Albritton's tremendous 2013-2014 season earned her one more award Thursday night when the Valdosta State softball star won the NCAA's Favorite Elite 89 Winner contest by securing the more votes than any other student-athlete.

    July 17, 2014

  • Justin Roper named Valdosta State quarterbacks coach

    Valdosta State’s hirin of Justin Roper as quarterbacks coach, previously reported by The Times, was officially announced by the school and Blazer head football coach David Dean on Wednesday.

    July 17, 2014

  • Lowndes_Tville 2.jpg Sneak Preview

    Fall practice doesn’t start for another eight days.
    Still, Lowndes High and Thomasville High got a sneak preview of what Friday nights will look like Wednesday morning at Martin Stadium.

    July 17, 2014 2 Photos

Top News

School starts again in about two weeks. What do you think?

It's still summer. School starts too soon.
Seems like the right time to return.
Abolish summer recess. Make school year-round.
     View Results