By Mary Frost
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
They jumped over puddles filled with debris and ran past food lines on West 9th Street.
On Sunday hundreds of Brooklynites joined a 10K run along the Brooklyn waterfront to raise funds for hard-hit residents of Red Hook. Organized by the South Brooklyn Running Club (SBRC), participants raised almost $7,000 and a pickup truck full of supplies for Red Hook Initiative, the organization coordinating local superstorm Sandy relief efforts.
Runners wound up the event in Cobble Hill at the popular pub 61 Local – named after Red Hook’s only bus route, the B61 -- with a post-race gathering.
“The idea for the run was first put forth by Caitlin Donovan and Grace Eginton on Friday when we learned the Marathon had been cancelled,” Ben Carter, founder of SBRC told the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. 61 Local was “awesome,” he said. “They opened up early Sunday, gave free drinks to participants, and hosted hundreds of not-so-great smelling runners afterwards.”
In contrast to the hostility brought on by the canceled New York City Marathon, runners were thrilled to see public housing residents -- most without electricity and heat for days -- cheering them on.
“It was great to see so much of the community, both the running community and the communities we live in, come out and give so much support,” Carter said.
“We were able to raise $6,676 and a pickup truck full of supplies. RHI was able to buy 150 heaters with the money we raised, and looking at the weather right now, those heaters were a smart choice.”
Plus, there were the intangible benefits.
“Everyone was so happy to do something,” Carter said. “We've received a lot of messages from participants saying how much fun they had and how much they've enjoy the experience of being able to get together with friends and neighbors, get in a little run, and help so many families.”