33rd running of the Tour du lac brome scheduled for June 18-19
By M. Helmuth Starhemberg
Gilles Decelles, mayor of Knowlton, welcomed organizers and sponsors of the upcoming 33rd running of the Tour du Lac Brome at a conference held at the Lakeview Inn in Knowlton on Tuesday. "This is an important event as it will further our goal to position the town as an outdoor destination, a goal to which I am, and my administration is, wholeheartedly committed to".
This is the first year in the history of the event that it will be held over two days of activities. The race has grown to more than 3,000 participants and with four major events scheduled, it was no longer possible to cram it all into one day. It takes more than 300 local volunteers, the assistance of the Surete de Quebec, the First Responders, the nice people who set up Gatorade and water stations along the route and the folks that have to set up the portable toilets to put this together. Then there is entertainment. This year, local artist Amos Joannides, who has just released his first album, will perform in Lions Park on Sunday June 19 at lunch time.
"This has come a long way", states Abercorn contractor Will Murray,"I was in the first race at age 12 and I did the whole 20 kilometers". He certainly looks fit enough to do it again and be competitive. He expressed what many other former participants say. They have enjoyed the races and many have competed multiple times.
This year will see the traditional two kilometer race for children which happens on Saturday, June 18 at 5:30pm. At 6:00pm starts the five kilometer race throuh the streets of Knowlton and both, the six and twelve kilometer trail races are scheduled to depart at 6:00 and 6:30 respectively. The trail winds through surrounding fields and forests and has been layed out to give the runners the challenge of moderate hills and flat stretches but a visually inspiring environment as well.
(photo of last year's event by Claude Beliveau)
On Sunday happens "the big one" as at 9:00 am the 20 kilometer race will start at Lions park. This race winds along the shores of Brome lake and competitors from all over Canada have come to race in this one. At 9:00am the ten kilometer race departs from the Knowlton golf course as well and in the afternoon there is a one kilometer race for children called the " Le p'tit marathon Radio Canada" and at the same time happens the famous Merrell Barefoot 1.6 km. race.
For the first time Montreal area participants can avail themselves of a $ 20 (return fare included) bus ticket which will bring them right into the center of Knowlton. Local hotels are pretty well booked up for the event and the restaurants are looking forward to having a good weekend as well but the best thing is that a lot of participants and spectators will have a blast in lovely Knowlton.