The high energy, lively spirit, sunny beach and professional timing of the Family Care Network’s Miracle Miles for Kids create a truly fun and irresistible event for the athletes of the Cal Poly Triathlon Team. For Colleen Norlander, veteran member of the Cal Poly Tri-Team, there are few things more refreshing than this 6.2 mile race on the sunny stretch of beach between Morro Rock and Cayucos Pier.

Norlander is a fourth year Kinesiology and Biology student who plans to participate for the third year in this year’s 8th annual 10K race. Although she has participated in several races over her three years with the team, she says that Miracle Miles for Kids is her favorite 10K race because “the atmosphere is positive and friendly and the location is beautiful.”

The sandy race course and upbeat feel of the race first attracted Norlander to register as a freshman at Cal Poly and has become an enjoyable annual event for herself and the rest of the Cal Poly Triathlon Team. In addition to the unique location and positive energy, this event directly benefits foster and high-needs children and families on California’s Central Coast.

“We love to support local races and are always down for a good workout,” said Norlander, who has seen the race grow noticeably in recent years to this year’s expected registration of over 3,000 participants. Miracle Miles for Kids also provides a relaxed and fun team experience for the end of a highly competitive season. Norlander loves that the race gives herself and her teammates an opportunity to participate in a local race that is also a “good workout in a low-stress positive environment.”

Timothy Black, another member of the Cal Poly Triathlon Team, has enjoyed running alongside his teammates in a group close to his speed at the end of his first two years at Cal Poly. Competitive racers like Black and Norlander appreciate the use of professional chip timing as a system for recording accurate times while remaining a relaxed environment.

“I have always loved the event because of the general atmosphere, the course (the beach!), and post-race festivities,” said Black, adding that his favorite part is a chance for a fun race with his friends and team members. The vendor fair, complimentary lunch, and live music helps to create a truly memorable experience for all race participants as well as promoting team unity. Norlander mentioned the “beautiful location and the people and residents along the beach cheering you on” as an encouraging aspect that sets Miracle Miles for Kids apart from other community races.

Competitive individual runners, athletic teams, community groups, and families with strollers are all welcome, contributing to the lively environment of the event. The Family Care Network will host this year’s Miracle Miles for Kids on Saturday May 7th from 8:30am with a post-race vendor fair, complimentary lunch, live music until 12:30pm. Registration is available at www.fcni.org.