The Klenda Austerman runners were at it again. For the sixth time, Klenda Austerman sponsored the Prairie Fire Marathon Race Series.   The Prairie Fire Marathon continues to be a popular event in Wichita, with this year’s event boasting a total of 2,200 participants from 24 states and over 280 communities. This year’s Spring race was particularly special as it was held on May 4th, which is known by Star Wars fans worldwide as National Star Wars Day for the date’s similarity to the franchise’s slogan, “May the Force Be With You.” Despite the hot temperatures, the force was strong with the Klenda Austerman runners.

Klenda Austerman Prairie Fire Half-Marathon Runners included partners John Gilliam (1:54:39), Scott Eads (1:41:12), Greg Klenda (1:36:47), Chris McElgunn and Michelle Brenwald. One staff member, Larkin Feikert, also ran the Half-Marathon (1:38:20). Associates Alex Flores (24:17), Jade Martin (30:36), and Sam Foreman (23:24) do not yet possess the Jedi running force, so they opted to run the 5K.  Partner Chasity Helm (28:48) ran the 5K accompanied by her son Kane, who guided her to the finish line in his stroller. Staff member Tara Hageman (31:46) also ran the 5k.  Though he finished the 5k light-years later, partner Gary Austerman (42:17), like Yoda, proved the force never vanishes with age. Way to go everyone!

Klenda Austerman will tackle the Prairie Fire Marathon Race Series again this Fall. We encourage anyone to join us at our trusted tent in the Runners’ Village where you can find shade, nourishment, seating, and some good conversation. Congratulations to all the participants!

–Alex P. Flores, KA Associate



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