Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Grove Trotter 5K/10K Supports Growing Needs of Vulnerable Families in Greater Williamsburg Region

(Grove Christian Outreach)

WILLIAMSBURG — Registration is now open for October’s Grove Trotter 5K/10K Bridge Run which supports the Grove Christian Outreach Center.

The walk/run, slated for Oct. 14, supports the mission of the center, which provides impoverished families across the Greater Williamsburg region with food, clothing, and financial assistance.

The USATF-certified event begins at Chickahominy Riverfront Park and takes runners on the Capital Trail before they return to the park. The 5K/10K is a Colonial Road Runners Grand Prix event.

The needs of many families in that region are dire, according to Katie Patrick, Executive Director of Grove Christian Outreach Center.

“We have seen more vulnerable families struggling to stay safely housed, and we are doing more work toward rent and utility assistance,” she explained. “We don’t anticipate that slowing down. Keeping families safely housed while also continuing to respond to their food and clothing needs and supporting our other programs are essential priorities for us.”

The pantry invites area residents to visit weekly for nonperishable food items. It also provides fresh food, diapers for families with small children and assorted cleaning and hygiene supplies.

Unfortunately, donations to the Outreach Center have declined, it said, requiring more outright grocery purchases to keep the pantry well stocked. Supply chain issues have reduced donations through the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank and the Feeding America Food Bank network.

“We’re purchasing from regular retailers and the prices are high,” Patrick said. “Our families who are already facing financial crises depend on the Outreach Center and others to assist so we want the shelves to remain full.”

The Outreach Center also operates a clothing closet and provides financial assistance on a case-by-case basis. Additional services include a children’s summer lunch program, senior social events and a multitude of holiday and seasonal support programs.

Last year the Grove Trotter raised close to $10,000. “I’d like to double that in 2023, but we’ve set our goal at approximately $17,000,” Patrick said.

The Outreach Center said it is always in need of volunteers at the 5K/10K or at the Outreach Center, and Patrick encourages businesses and churches to host food drives. Financial donations of any amount are greatly appreciated.

Businesses looking for ways to give to the local community can adopt a Grove Trotter Box, a themed donation box that the Outreach Center delivers to you and picks up once your donation drive is over. Needs range from underwear to socks to breakfast foods to winter gear and more.

Registration is $40 for 10K participants and $35 for 5K participants who sign up before Sept. 17.

Race packet pick-up begins at 7:30 a.m. on Oct. 14 and the event will begin at 9 a.m. The top three finishers in selected age categories will receive awards. All participants receive a T-shirt to commemorate the event.

To register, visit

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