Armonk residents of all ages gathered at Wampus Brook Park for the annual Jamie’s 5K Run for Love and the Cider and Donut Festival on September 23rd. The morning kicked off with the run, which had several toddlers racing in the Donut Dash. Older kids got to participate in the McIntosh Mile and runners ages 10 and up raced to the finish line in Jamie’s 5K Run for Love. The race was created in order to honor the memory of Jamie Love, a passionate runner and former member of the Byram Hills cross country and track & field team who died suddenly of a cardiac arrhythmia while attending the University of Vermont.
Every year friends from his former college participate in the race. Rafael Rodriguez from Bristol, CT was one of Love’s friends from college who studied engineering with him. “We were with him the week that he died. No one could believe it. He was like family to us and that’s why I run.” This year the race had 358 participants with some hailing from lower Westchester and others from as far away as Seattle.
After the race, festival attendees had plenty of activities to choose from. Slime making was a hit for the kids as well as the ever-popular train ride. Food trucks as well as fresh apple cider and donuts were enjoyed by many in attendance. Other activities included donut fishing, pie eating contests and listening to live music by Vinyl Countdown. The autumnal weather was the perfect setting for the fun-filled day.
“The Cider and Donut Festival has become a staple of the community,” commented Neal Schwartz, President of the Armonk Chamber of Commerce. Fresh apples and cider are an Armonk tradition, dating back to 1951, when Ed and Mary Schultz opened their renowned cider mill in town. In 1965, they added hot donuts, whose recipe has endured, even after their closing in 2002. Locals still hunger for those memories and get to relive them at the annual fall festival.
“The Armonk Chamber’s Cider and Donut Festival, which includes Jamie’s 5k Run for Love and the Byram Hills Pre-School Association Carnival, has grown to be a local favorite. We give our member businesses and local organizations a chance to interact with the community in a big way. It’s great to see so many families participating in both the races and all the activities. This is what small town living is all about,” noted Stacy Wilder, the Executive Director of the Armonk Chamber of Commerce.
Net proceeds from the event benefitted children’s programs at the North Castle Public Library, the Byram Hills Pre-School Association and the Armonk Chamber of Commerce.