Are you a historic preservationist and a runner? If so, raise your hand high! Recently a friend pointed out to me that most of my friends here in Vermont are (a) lawyers – specifically environmental lawyers – and (b) runners. More specifically, they are running lawyers. Is there a connection between being a lawyer and a runner? The lawyers say that it’s Type A personality and the need for stress relief that drive them to run. And I started to wonder: where are the running-preservationists?
Running-preservationists, you must be around somewhere. I’m thinking you’re in the south, mostly, based on the 5K races I could find. This year was the 8th Annual Race for Preservation, hosted by the Historic Savannah Foundation. And the National Trust has just announced that a team of PresNation folks will be running in the Savannah Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon/Half Marathon/Relay on November 8, the Saturday before this year’s Preservation Conference.
A few others I’ve found:
- Historic Wilmington (NC) Foundation 5K Race for Preservation;
- Uptown Rhodes Race 5K for the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation;
- Historic Mitchelville 5K (Hilton Head, SC);
- Friends of Fishtown (MI) 5K
- Delphi (IN) Diamond Dash 5K
Do you have any others? Are you a runner?
I’m a runner and a preservationist, two of the first ways I’ll describe myself. Both are deeply rooted in my soul. The two go hand-in-hand. I love running in new places; it’s the best form of sight-seeing because it’s faster than walking, more adventurous, and safer than biking or driving. Running is the easiest way to get to know a place, to learn street names and landmarks, to observe it, to study it. When you run, you see place in all of its forms: waking up in the morning, in the afternoon glow, or settling in for the night, in all sorts of weather – good and terrible. You move swiftly through neighborhoods and blocks, almost unseen, though you see so much. When I run, it’s my time with my town or city and I get to understand how the streets wind together. I memorize which sidewalks are uneven, which houses have barking dogs, and other nuances.
I know I’m not the only runner-preservationist (or would you prefer running-preservationist). Speak up! Let’s get together for a city running tour, especially at the next conference.
p.s. more running + preservation posts: Running in the Evening Light,Running Notes, Historic Running Tours, Sounds Beneath Your Feet & Old Memories, New Memories: The Evolution of My Favorite Place.
5 thoughts on “Where Are the Running Preservationists?”
Nice shoes. What brand are they? I fell in love with Asics.
Savor running while you’re young. I use to love to run (I loved running in the rain too!) but my knees were shot by my late 20s. I remember running and thinking to myself, enjoy it now because it won’t last forever. Hopefully you’ve got good genes.
Pearl Izumi. I’ve been running in Brooks Adrenaline for years and years, until finally I thought I’d have my stride analyzed. Turns out, they were no longer meant for me. So I took a jump to these, which are supposed to be more efficient for me. Fingers crossed! I have a race coming up at the beginning of May.
Can I call myself a “Moving-Preservationist”? A long-long time ago, I wrote back to my freshman college roommate after receiving her “about me” letter and told her I was a runner too! I then discovered she was an ACTUAL runner, like crazy distances and sooo fast!….since then I have been gun-shy by defining myself as a runner. I run, but slowly (which gives me lots of time to look at buildings!) and anything further than 3 miles most of the time feels like too much to me. Last year I did a 10K and afterward I was like ‘Woohoo! I did it….I am okay with not doing it again!’ (but I said it in an enthusiastic voice). So I feel like “Moving-Preservationist” is probably more accurate 🙂
If you run, own it! Runners love other runners, whatever the speed. We understand each other. 🙂