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May 9, 2002

Weekly Informal Running Races Set to Begin on Deer Island

Beginning on Saturday May 25 at 10 a.m. local area runners will begin the tradition of a weekly Saturday run around Deer Island.  

Tom Derderian, a resident of Point Shirley, has organized the event along with the help of the Friends of Deer Island Association, the Point Shirley Athletic Association, the Greater Boston Track Club and the United States Track and Field Association. The races are intended to serve as training races or weekly time trials.

The kickoff is also planned in conjunction with the opening of the newly constructed parklands around the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority’s Deer Island Treatment Plant.

"These races will be low-key weekly races without a lot of fanfare to encourage local citizens to get out and run around and get healthy. And why not get out and run around a facility that provides a necessary public health service," said Derderian.

The races will begin at 10 a.m. weekly without charge. Derderian also noted that no amenities would be offered, such as T-shirts and prizes. The races will resemble those that have been held weekly around the Fresh Pond Reservoir for the past 40 years. Runners need not register, and only need to show up and run. Time and place will be recorded and published at and in the Winthrop Transcript and Boston Globe.

"We’re trying to keep this as simple as possible so we can continue to do it weekly, year round, with no budget," said Derderian.

The Greater Boston Track Club already has plans to incorporate these races into their training says Derderian, who is also the coach of that club. And Winthrop high school and middle school coaches are considering holding their fall cross-country races on the island.

The perimeter loop around the island is about 2.5 miles. The initial race will be one loop. An additional loop over the hills will be available for those who want a longer, more difficult challenge. The terrain allows for varying levels of difficulty.

In the fall the Point Shirley Athletic Association plans to use a loop of the island as part of its annual 5-mile race, which starts and finishes at the Point Shirley Yacht Club.

For more information, Tom Derderian can be reached at 617-846-2902.