All-America Triathlon: a feeling of community
Three men and three women earned top spots in the first All-America City Triathlon held Saturday, but the declared winners are the three organizations that helped the city achieve All-America status.
The triathlon was a benefit for North Carolina Memorial Day Parade & Celebration, Children at Play and Project Divine Intervention, the three charities which were the focal point of Thomasville’s All-America City presentation.
The triathlon, which ran from 4 to 6 p.m., consisted of a 250-yard swim at the Tom A. Finch YMCA pool, a 13-mile bike ride across the city and countryside and a 5K run on a loop course traveling through trails and Chair City neighborhoods.
"The Y was honored to host the sprint triathlon," said Jarod Dunbar, YMCA director of membership. "There was a lot of anticipation and work that went into making our facilities and property presentable for the participants and supporters.
"I was pleasantly surprised with the turnout and it seemed as though everyone enjoyed themselves. The event was a good fit for the Y's cause to strengthen community, and there was definitely a feeling of community throughout the day."
Tracy Brinkley, founder of Project Division Intervention and one of the triathlon organizers, was ecstatic with the camaraderie of the participants and volunteers.
“Between the volunteers, community, people from the eastern and western part of the state, they were telling us that they were amazed with the camaraderie in Thomasville,” Brinkley said.
She said the presence of the Thomasville police and fire departments, and the music of DJ Tommy Rock and the band Street Party added to the sense of community.
“It was unlike any other event,” she added. The energy was good and continually flowed. And, here’s the bonus, those who placed received homemade apple pies from some of the city’s best bakers.”
In the women's division Adriene Fletcher of Winston-Salem was the first to cross the finish line followed by Sara Apel of Jamestown and Beth Hicks of Lexington.
In the men's division Jeremy Yoemans of Thomasville earned first place followed by Andrew Corbin of Greensboro and Corey Smith of Lexington.
As of Monday, the amount earned through the event was not known, but there was no doubt of its success. The All-America Committee will meet today to plan next year’s event.