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The Kent Cornucopia 5k – Final Battle Of The Boomers

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Part One – The Kent Cornucopia Days 5k


by Jerry Dietrich
with photos by Bruce Fisher


.7/15/17 – Kent


It was a once in a lifetime event. The competition was unrivaled past or present. The top runners in each of the age groups from 50-54 to 85-89 were on hand to test each other. Age division winners would be the fastest in the state without question. Runners who would normally win their age division at most races, found themselves faced with a battle to make the top five.

The reason for this unrivaled competition was the Final Battle of the Boomers which was being held in conjunction with the Cornucopia Days 5k.

A report on the Final Battle of the Boomers by the Tab Wizard, Dennis Zaborac will describe the details of this competition in part two of this report.

What a Silver Strider turnout!  Of the 520 finishers, 224, or an amazing 43% of those present, were Silver Striders  50 years of age and older.

The Tab Wizard, Dennis Zaborac


This race continues to grow in popularity with the over 50 crowd every year.  This is due in large part to the generosity of the Tab Wizard who picks up the tab for all runners over 60.

The race had everything a runner could want:
-The certified course was a flat, fast, out and back on a paved bike path.
-Runners were offered 5 year age group competition to 80 plus.
-The results were posted immediately.
-Plaques were presented to the age division winners with ribbons going 5 deep during the awards ceremony.

Mark Hendrickson, activties director for the City of Kent Parks & Recreation Department, knows how to put on a great race.  Runners and walkers alike, appreciate the time and attention he devotes to making the Kent Cornucopia 5k and The Christmas Rush outstanding events.

In front, in blue, is Race Director, Mark Hendrickson


The first Silver Strider to finish was Joe Sheeran, age 59,  with a World Class time of 17:29. Joe was also 3rd overall.

1st Silver Strider, Joe Sheeran experiences the pain of a World Class time.

The first female Silver Strider to finish was Lisa Knoblich, age 53, in a National Class time of 20:07. Lisa was 3rd woman overall.

Lisa Knoblich is the 1st Female Silver Strider, and 3rd woman overall.


















Two legends congratulate each other. Vicki Griffiths, 79 (left), and Barbara Macklow 83.

The new Silver Strider hat. Order yours today. email: betty@silverstrider.com

New Silver Strider – Connie Appleyard

New Silver Strider – Tom Perkins

The Three Birthday Amigos. Left to right: Dave Anderson, Tiare Bailey, and Steve Husko.

The birthday cakes.

Twenty-six Silver Striders join the birthday celebration.


































Photos of the age division winners will follow part 2 of this report.







   The Tab Wizard’s
Battle of the Boomers




Part Two      The Final Battle – Who Won?




by Dennis Zaborac
with photos by Bruce Fisher















After nearly two years to the date, on July 15, 2017, the final “Battle of the Boomer’s” race returned to the course where the series originally started, the Kent Cornucopia 5k. Under a warm and sunny day, fifty-two Boomer’s lined up to compete for the title of “Best of the Boomers” in an age-graded competition for money and trophies.

At age 68, I was pretty much in the middle of the Boomer’s demographics, where the youngest runner was 50 year’s old and the oldest competitor was 88 year’s old. I had no delusion of winning it all. Like most of the runners, I was out to run my best, maybe taking down one or two in my age group, and hoping to land in one of the lucky spots paying $100.

At the start line, a small group of the fastest “ purple shirts” formed near the front. The rest were scattered further back among all the other runners. I slipped into the middle of the pack, thinking those in front of me would pull me along, while those behind me would push me forward. That, of course, didn’t happen. The ones ahead of me took off, and the ones behind me trampled me.

In an age-graded competition, it is impossible to know from your position in the race who is actually winning. It comes down to how far ahead of you is that 50-year-old kid. And how close behind you is that 80-year-old man. You are basically left to running against yourself. You push yourself to the limit and hope for the best. Still, that competitor in you will never go away.

While running, I still found myself trying to guess the age of any “purple shirt’ near me. When I passed someone, I took a good look to see if they were younger than me, and when someone passed me, my confidence would drop if they looked older than me.

All along the course, Boomers were passing each other. To spectators along the course, it must have seemed like the purple wave of a UW football game. Only, no one was passing footballs.

Trying to keep track of 52 runners while you are running in a regular race is a challenging task. Trying to keep track of 52 runners in an age-graded race is an impossible task. Like all the other runners in the Boomer race, when I crossed the finish line I had no idea of who had won or how I had fared. All I knew was that It would take awhile to calculate who had the best age-graded time and determine a winner.

However, as I looked around at my Boomer competitors, and saw the health they had, the camaraderie they shared, and the smiles on their faces, I immediately knew who had won.

We had all won.

We were winners long before we even stepped up to the start line of the Cornucopia 5K. We had the credentials to prove it. We had the purple shirts. We were the best in our age groups, and by some means, through the decades, had found a way to outrun “father time” and remain active and healthy well into our senior years.

In age graded, any age can win money.

1st Joe Sheeran 59, 17:29 $500 + Trophy


2nd Jane Treleven 68, 22:51 $300 + Trophy















3rd Patricia Warner 71, 23:49 $200 + Trophy

10th John O’Hearn 55, 18:18 $100

20th Keith Lerew 59, 19:51 $100

30th Dave Sherman 63, 21:39 $100

40th Louise Mihay 76, 32:57 $100

50th Chloe Parr 88, 53:24 $100















2nd to last Jerry Dietrich 83, 41:09 $ 50

The Agony and the Ecstasy

****Note from the sponsor****

I want to thank all of you for participating in the Boomer series, and I want to thank Betty and Jerry Dietrich and the Silver Striders for making it happen. My intent was to bring the best of the best together and put a face to the names on the Top Ten Lists. In so doing, I believe we have brought the state’s running community a little closer together.

I hope to see you all at the start lines of races for years to come.

Dennis Zaborac


The Cornucopia 5k in pictures by Bruce Fisher












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