Painting the town green

Utica’s third annual Lucky Leprechaun Race will take place March 7

By: Sarah Wojcik | Shelby - Utica News | Published March 4, 2015

 Runners in last year’s Lucky Leprechaun Race head out from the starting line at Shamrock Irish Pub in downtown Utica on March 8, 2014.

Runners in last year’s Lucky Leprechaun Race head out from the starting line at Shamrock Irish Pub in downtown Utica on March 8, 2014.

File photo by Donna Agusti

Advertisement

UTICA — Organizers of the third annual Lucky Leprechaun 5K Race encourage people to put on their running shoes, and maybe a costume, March 7 in anticipation of St. Patrick’s Day, which takes place 10 days later.

The race will be held through the streets of downtown Utica and surrounding subdivisions, featuring three bridge crossings, the “world-famous graffiti tunnel” and scenic views of the Clinton River and historic Victorian and Greek revival homes on Cass Avenue.

The race will begin in front of Shamrock Irish Pub at 10:30 a.m. and will be preceded by a costume contest at 10 a.m. Prizes will be given to the best-dressed male and female participants. Participants also are encouraged to dress their pets for the dog-friendly race.

“A DJ will be there from Rock the House Entertainment, as well as an announcer who will call people’s names before they hit the finish line,” Race Director Tom Gray said.

The race will conclude in front of race sponsor UAW Local 2280. After the race, organizers will host an award ceremony for the top three runners in each age group and a disc jockey will spin tunes. Refreshments will be served.

Utica publicist Michael Dach said there would also be a Green Mile — a 1-mile fun run for kids and walkers.

“The Lions Club is the beneficiary of the proceeds,” he said. “The track is a USA Track and Field-certified course.”

Gray said Utica is an ideal location for the Lucky Leprechaun Race because Irish and German immigrants founded it in 1817 and it includes the Shamrock Irish Pub, Muldoon’s Tavern, the Shamrock gas station and two other bars — all within a city block.

Last year, Gray said 611 people participated in the run, which was up from 475 runners the year before.

“If we can maintain the figures in that area and try to get some growth, that would be great,” he said. “It’s a very festive event — everybody’s happy. We still have elite runners that come out, but it’s more about family and friends.”

For more information, visit www.utica-events.com or www.luckyleprechaunrace.com.

Advertisement