5K, golf outing that will take place during the Manistee National Forest Festival

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The Forest Festival Golf Outing begins at 8 a.m. July 1 at Manistee National Golf & Resort and the Manistee Firecracker 5K Run/Walk begins at 8 a.m. July 2.

“We are pleased to host the golf outing again, as this will be the second year the chamber has hosted this event,” said Stacie Bytwork, President and CEO of the Manistee Area Chamber of Commerce. “It’s a great way to start the weekend at Manistee National Golf & Resort.”


The four-person jamming is sponsored by the Little River Casino Resort. Entry fee of $80 per person or $370 per team includes golf, cart, lunch and prizes, including contests closest to the pin on the par-3 holes.

There will be prizes for the men’s, women’s, senior and mixed teams.

Registration can be completed at manisteechamber.com.

The Manistee 5K Run/Walk will start and end at Manistee Middle/High Schoollocated at 525 12e St.

“Dr. Ron Gardin started it as the Forest Festival Run in 1979,” said Eric Thuemmel, who began coordinating the run when he became Manistee High’s track and cross-country coach. School in 2008.

“At first they had a 5k and a 10k and even a half marathon in some years. It’s become a 5K over the past 25 years and the name was changed to Firecracker Run/Walk in the early 2000s,” he said.

When Thuemmel started as the track/cross country coach, Manistee High School was one of the few schools in the state that did not have its own track. The Forest Festival event has become a fundraiser for the new Manistee Community Trailwhich was completed in 2017 and is used by both Manistee and Manistee Catholic Central schools.

“It’s a magnificent facility,” Thuemmel said. “It has done phenomenal things for school children, and the adults in the community are using it as well. Between Manistee Catholic and Manistee High School, there has been at least one conference champion in the past three years. In 2021, the Manistee Boys and Girls and Manistee Catholic Boys all won conference titles.

“It’s nice to have coaches stop by for the first time and say what a beautiful track and what a beautiful place it is. It’s just done wonders for participation and for involving the kids and engaging the community,” he added.

Funds from the race – as well as a Forest Festival pancake breakfast to be held July 3 at Manistee High School – continue to be used to benefit the track.

“Last year, we used the recipes to paint the relay exchange area lines and the cascading start lines,” Thuemmel said.

Thuemmel said while early registration makes it easier for everyone, runners and walkers will be accepted until the start time of the races – 8:00 a.m. for a fun 1km walk and 8:15 a.m. for the 5 km run/walk.

“I want to point out that our prices have stayed the same for 15 years ($25 pre-registration, $30 race day),” he said. “The support of our sponsors made this possible.”

Thuemmel said he also appreciates the volunteers who help out with the race – mostly members of the track team and local running enthusiasts.

“We are excited to be able to do it again this year with all restrictions lifted,” he said. “We’re also looking forward to good weather, which also helps.”

While the reconstruction of the 12e The street makes it difficult to drive to high school, it won’t impact the race as it heads west from the school to Tamarack Street then north to loop around Douglas Park First Street Beach then back to school.

“I might have to stick up a few signs that say ‘high school over here,'” Thuemmel said. “Drivers will need to take Eighth Street to Tamarack to get to school.”

Further information is available and registration can be completed at runmanistee.blogspot.com.

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