BLOOMFIELD, NJ -- The third annual 5K Spirit Run kicks off this Saturday, October 28 at 8:00 am at the Bloomfield Town Green, 71-127 Broad St. The race is organized by Sacred Heart Church, Bloomfield’s oldest Catholic parish, and proceeds go toward maintaining Mt. Olivet Cemetery. The first annual 5K Spirit Run took place on Halloween, Saturday, October 31, with 200 runners participating.
“Sacred Heart Church envisioned this race as a fun community building event for a good cause--maintaining the cemetery that Father Nardiello founded over 100 years ago,” said Spirit Run Coordinator Nancy Plate. “We pride ourselves on maintaining a beautiful cemetery out of respect for those buried at Mt. Olivet and their loved ones. Your participation in the Spirit Run helps to ensure that one of Essex County’s oldest continuous final resting places will not fall into disrepair. Thank you for participating in the preservation and care of this Sacred Ground.”
Mt. Olivet, which is maintained by the Sacred Heart Church, was founded by Bloomfield Priest Joseph Nardiello in 1883. It is the resting place of several hundred U.S. combat veterans including veterans of the Civil War and a Medal of Valor recipient.
The 5K Spirit Run course is USATF-NJ certified, which means USATF members gain points which they can use to register for longer races. The course begins and ends at “The Green” on Broad Street and Park Place across from Sacred Heart Church, and runs down Liberty St. to JFK Drive N. to James St. through Mt. Olivet Cemetery. Sections of JFK Drive N. and nearby streets will be closed during the time of the race, though residents will have access to their homes. Oakes Pond gates will remain open to allow neighboring residents of the Spring St. area additional parking.
Registration costs $30. Parking will be offered in the Sacred Heart School parking lot at 12 State Street and 683 Bloomfield Avenue. Participants may register online at compuscore.com or runsignup.com or by contacting Nancy Plate at 973-743-4061. Same day registration begins at 7:15 am on race day. Medals will be awarded to first place finishers in each age category: Male and Female 14 and under, 15-19, 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, and every 5 year age span.