Dog-friendly race continues to grow in popularity

CanineCreek2012 StartBy Jennifer Pund
With Colorado being one of the healthiest States in the country, there are plenty of opportunities to get outside and exercise, but including your dog can be a challenge. The Clear Creek Metropolitan Recreation District has teamed with Charlie’s Place, the Clear Creek and Gilpin County animal shelter, to bring a 5K and dogs together for the 2015 Canine on the Creek, May 9.

The event started in 2012 with 60 participants and has grown each year. There is a goal of 150 participants in 2015. “I was new to CCMRD and looking for opportunities to put on races in our community,” CCMRD Events and Programs Coordinator Stacey Todd, said. “We did a Turkey Trot at the Easter Seals [camp] the previous fall and had so many folks want to run with their dogs, that I wanted to offer a dog-friendly race. Teaming with Charlie’s place was the logical thing to do, and it’s been a great fit. The event brings in runners and walkers from all over the state with a majority having never heard of Charlie’s Place.”

A dog is not required, but encouraged. Participants are allowed to bring one dog that is up to date with vaccinations, non-aggressive and leashed at all times. Volunteers will also have pups to borrow for the day, or adopt forever.

Starting at 10:30 a.m., the 5K is an “out and back” race beginning and ending at Charlie’s Place Animal Shelter, 500 W. Dumont Road in Dumont. Using a path through Clear Creek County Open Space along the river, the route continues on Silver Lakes Dr. and out to County Road 308. Racers turn left on Alvarado Road to the Lawson Whitewater Park where a water station and restroom is available along with doggy pools. Participants follow the same course back.

An after-party is planned with Tommyknocker beer, awards and prize give-aways from local businesses. “This year we are making it more of a festival atmosphere with venders, a beer garden for adults and inflatables for younger participants. We want folks to stick around and hang out,” Todd said. The shelter will also be open for tours and adoptions.

Registration fees, including goodies for humans and dogs, are $25 for adults and $18 for anyone under 18. It costs an additional $5 on race day. Fees are refunded with a successful adoption.

“This has done a good job of raising awareness for Charlie’s Place and is a great community event for runners and walkers of all ages,” Todd said.

Volunteers, who get plenty of great perks, are still needed for registration, timing and course marshals.

For additional information, visit, or call Stacey Todd at 303-567-4822 or e-mail

Originally published in the May 2015 issue of the MMAC Monthly

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