California High School Track and Cross Country Fundraiser big success

Participants of the first Annual Waylon Martensen Endure The Race 5K Run/Walk Fundraiser get set to start the race Saturday, Aug. 20, at the California High School track.

Participants of the first Annual Waylon Martensen Endure The Race 5K Run/Walk Fundraiser get set to start the race Saturday, Aug. 20, at the California High School track. Photo by April Arnett.

The California High School cross country and track teams hosted the first Annual Waylon Martensen 'Endure The Race' 5K Run/Walk Fundraiser Saturday, Aug. 20, at the high school track, where a total of 138 paricipants competed in the event, with 124 ultimately crossing the finish line. Area youth also had the opportunity to participate in the Kids Mile, held prior to the 5K Run/Walk.

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Rex and Cindy Martensen, at left, participate in the 5K Run/Walk Saturday, Aug. 20. A portion of the proceeds from the fundraiser will go to the Waylon Martensen Memorial Track and Cross Country Scholarship fund, established in their son's memory.

"The event was a huge success," Gwen Kirby, event co-chair, said. "The proceeds will support scholarship opportunities for the track and cross country athletes as well as providing equipment for our cross country and track programs for both the middle school and high school programs."

A portion of the proceeds from the event, which is the main fundraiser for CHS and CMS track programs and the newly formed cross country program, will go to the Waylon Martensen Memorial Track and Cross Country Scholarship Fund.

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Track and cross country runners from Northwest Missouri State University, teammates of former CHS track team member Waylon Martensen, participated in the 5K Run Saturday, Aug. 20.

Martensen was a four-year member of the CHS track team who continued his passion for running at Northwest Missouri State University until his death May 7, 2010.

"We weren't sure what to expect since this was the first time for this event," Waylon's father Rex Martensen said. "But we had a great turnout. Our expectations were definitely exceeded. Waylon would've been proud of the effort and the fact that so many people came together for this event. He also would've been proud to see the Northwest kids came."

Approximately 20 of Waylon's teammates from NMSU participated in the 5K Run.

Waylon's mother Cindy Martensen said, "The night ended with a beautiful sunset. It was just wonderful."

For more of this story check out the Aug. 24 issue of the California Democrat.

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