BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - Justin Phillips of Springfield was first to cross the finish line of the Berkeley Heights Charity 5K and Family Fun Run last Sunday in 19:20.80.  James Doucette of Chatham placed second in 19:21.87 and 13 year old Jackson Levin of Summit placed third in 20:06.82. Click here for overall results.

Over 400 runners of all ages turned out for the charity race that follows the sanctioned course through the neighborhoods of Berkeley Heights. Special recognition was made to the top three finishers in each age category from the oldest of the finishers including 87 year old Joseph Labruno of Bayonne, 86 year old Melva Murray of Hillsborough,NJ all the way down to the youngest finishers.

The Berkeley Heights Charity 5K aims to provide the financial support to local charities. Rather than supporting a single cause, the 5K on Sunday has raised money for over 20 local nonprofits organizations and groups. In its 22nd year, the race is poised to reach a cumulative fundraising milestone of raising a quarter million dollars.

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Berkeley Heights 5K Director Dr. Patrick Smith thanked his volunteers that include members of the Berkeley Heights Education Foundation, members of the Gov. Livingston Cross Country team who manned the water stop, the Berkeley Heights Volunteer Rescue Squad, the Berkeley Heights Police Department, to name a few, as well as, the many sponsors that support the event each year.

Smith recognized Steve SanAntonio, Wolfpack Running Club head coach for his years of supporting the race and encouraging his youth to participate. "I am more honored with what Dr. Patrick Smith does giving back to the community," said SanAntonio. "Every single dollar that you guys put into this race goes right back out to the community." 

SanAntonio thanked Smith for his continued support of the program.  "We, with the running program, believe in no child left behind. It gives every child of every ability the opportunity to exercise. That is what Dr. Smith believes in, that's what my coaches believe, it's been a successful program. Thank you for letting this happen," said SanAntonio.

Smith thanked the large crowd in attendance. "All of you are part of what we do. Without you here we wouldn't be able to provide all of the grants," he said. Click here for list of organizations that were recipients of past grants.

Dr. Patrick Smith presented checks to the Berkeley Heights Police Youth Academy; Berkeley Heights YMCA expansion project; and the Berkeley Heights Education Foundation.

Race sponsors include Elizabeth Schaffer Fund, Berkeley Aquatic Club, Taylor Rental, Investors Bank, TAPinto Berkeley Heights, Goodman's Deli and Restaurant, eMedical Urgent Care, Sneaker Factory, Weichert Realtors, Smith Chiropractic, Allstate, Derco Print, Bassett Associates, Massage Envy, JAG Physical Therapy, The Liberty Group, Runnells Center, Samuel G. Smith Jr. Memorial Fund. Click here for full list of sponsors.  

Visit the Berkeley Heights 5K website for more information about the race and the Smith Chiropractic Foundation.