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Shelter Island 10K likely to run June 19

If COVID-19 cases continue to drop, organizers of the Island’s prestigious 10K could sound the starting gun on June 19.

It won’t be the same event it’s been in past years, which brought up to 2,000 participants to the starting line and crowds of residents and visitors cheering them on.

But Race Director Mary Ellen Adipietro and her team could stage a smaller event with no more than 1,000 participants.

Ms. Adipietro, along with New York City Runners Club’s John Honerkamp and Chief Executive Officer Brendan Dagan of Elitefeats, which times and scores running events, outlined plans at Tuesday’s Town Board work session.

Supervisor Gerry Siller said, “You have our blessings to continue to move forward.”

Besides limiting the number of participants, there will be no onsite registration. Participants will receive their bibs in the mail and be required to wear masks at the start line and again at the finish line. There will no pre- or post-race events and no bus transportation from North or South ferries for those participants who don’t live on the Island.

An awards session will be conducted two days after the race on Zoom.

Runners will be staged about six to a line socially spacing them from one another and one group at a time will be allowed to start the race. Residents who provided water for runners at sites along the course won’t be allowed. Instead, small bottled water will be available at tables around the Island with receptacles to discard the empty bottles.

Because of staggered starts, there won’t be the usual first across the finish line but, instead, winners will be determined in categories by timing.

Some elite runners may participate, but they tend to be people who already live within the United States. Travel restrictions generally prohibit racers from other countries, Mr. Dagan said. He speculated that some elite runners would probably participate because there have been few events in the past year where they could enjoy their sport.

He said he doesn’t know of a single case of COVID-19 that was traced to any runners in races since the pandemic started.

As in the past, the event is a major fundraiser with proceeds this year going to Island organizations, Ms. Adipietro said.

Other efforts to return to normal

There will be no Memorial Day Parade on the Island this year, but Councilman Jim Colligan is working with Commander Dave Clark of the American Legion Post to plan a ceremony. As soon as they provide details, the Reporter will carry the information.

The arts and crafts fair that occurs along with the Green Expo in recent years could happen again this August It’s typically an outdoor event on the grounds of the American Legion Post and school lawn. A group that proposed a beach cleanup throughout Long Island has received a turndown because the Green Options Committee, Lions Club and other groups have held their own beach and area cleanups and hope to be able to do so again this year.

The one popular event that is giving town officials pause is the annual fireworks show that the town holds the weekend after July 4. There’s “a bit of trepidation” about allowing the event this year because people gather in large groups to watch the fireworks from Crescent Beach. Its future for this year remains in doubt, Mr. Siller said.