BY SUSAN COTE
With just a few weeks to put it together, organizers learned Williston’s annual 5K race could take place this year on its traditional timing, Fourth of July weekend.
Cancelled in 2020 along with the rest of the town’s usual festivities, the race this year resumes with a new purpose — remembering Deb Beckett, Williston’s longtime town clerk and treasurer, who passed away last year.
In addition to her 30-year career with the town, Beckett was an Army National Guard veteran who served two tours in the Middle East. She is remembered for her extensive participation and leadership in many community organizations, as well as her enthusiasm for the town’s Fourth of July celebrations.
Starting in 2018, Beckett recruited members of the Williston-Richmond Rotary Club to serve as volunteers for the annual 5K race, according to Todd Goodwin, Williston’s Director of Recreation & Parks. It was her vision that the club take on leadership of the race, as is happening for the first time this year.
One of many highly anticipated Independence Day festivities in Williston, the 5K race has been a fixture for decades. After a few years without race timing, it is being reintroduced this year. Given the short notice, organizers were happy to get the loan of timing equipment from CVU High School.
Rotary Race Committee member Marty LeWinter credits fellow committee members Armand Fournier and Dave Ericson, along with essential support from the Town Recreation and Parks Department and the commitment of a large number of volunteers, with making the 2021 return of this Williston tradition possible.
The Deb Beckett Memorial Run takes place on July 3 at 5 p.m. Pre-registration closes on June 20. To register, visit www.willistonrec.org.