Farmersville Rotary Club sponsored this hot 5 Mile Run through the farmland surrounding the city with the finish line at the Farmersville City Park. Grandma was babysitting so I got to run as well. Just a year after giving birth to Matt, Rosie was in superb form and was the 3rd Overall Woman finisher at 37 minutes 4 seconds. Rosie didn’t know it at the time, but she was in her first month of pregnancy with Holly. I jogged the race for fun since the temperature was hot and my reward – free cool watermelon after the race.
There are so many trails at Red River Gorge Geological Area. We hiked .3 miles on the Grays Arch Trail then turned right onto the 7.1-mile Rough Trail. Rough Trail descended the ridge where we saw lots of trash laying on or just off the trail. It turned out to be forest magic, or an optical illusion, as the trash was the lighter side of giant leaves (see photo of Rosie holding the front and back of a leaf). Just over a mile along the trail we reached our destination, the scenic Grays Arch, one of over one hundred natural arches in the Red River Gorge area. We were told during wet weather, a beautiful waterfall occurs at the arch. Signs warned us to be alert for black bears and copperhead snakes. Overall, we hiked 2.6 miles on this enjoyable trail.
We began on the north end of the 7.1-mile Rough Trail. Military Wall Trail was a spur that ascended west towards cliff walls. About .3 miles later it ended at the steep cliff face, and you could see powder everywhere on the rock cliff from previous rock climbers.
This was one scary looking old brick building. Opened in 1828, the Infirmary was the home for the poor, outcast and downtrodden (and eventually mental ill, drunks and the physical challenged) to receive food, clothing, and medical care. There were 82 “inmates” in 1903. It is now used for paranormal exploration both public and private. Lots of ghostly claims abound here. There were No Trespassing signs posted so I could not get around to the back of the buildings to get close-up photos of two items that are famous roadside attractions here. The two things are the famous “Twisty Busses” from the TV series “American Horror Story: Freak Show”. I hope to return and do an investigation here at the infirmary sometime.
The half-acre Stonewell Cemetery built in 1817 as a family burial ground by Nathan Wilson has been deeded to the sitting President since President James Monroe but no President has taken up the offer. The cemetery has six family graves with space to bury one more person. The tombstones are surrounded by a strong seven-foot-high circular wall built with large stones in the shape of the dodecagon, a 12-sided shape that looked circular to me. The walls were added in 1838-1939. The wall is considered one of the best examples of dry-stone masonry in Ohio. The entrance faces geodetic true north. The builder of the cemetery deeded it to the President with the hopes that the President would take care of the upkeep and could be buried there if he desired.
The engraving above the gate states: This wall which encloses the family burying ground of Nathaniel Wilson (one of the early Pioneers of the West, who emigrated from Cumberland County, Pa and settles near this place AD 1798, when all around was one continued and uninhabited wilderness) was commenced by him AD 1838 & finished in the following year by his son Gustin, the former having suddenly died May 12, 1839.
One funny and stupid urban legend/folklore associated with the cemetery is this: if you climb up on the wall and walk around it thirteen times, the spirits within will suck them into the circle.
This 10-acre geology park was very interesting, consisting of a hillside with layers of shale and limestone and fossils. After reading the many informational kiosks Rosie returned to the truck as she was worried about falling on the wet, cold, steep hillside. I carefully hiked up and across the hill, ascending past or stepping on thousands of loose rock and shale. After searching through many rocks, I discovered one that had both brachiopod and gastropod fossils. The highlight of the .7-mile hike was at the summit of the hill, a great view looking south toward the City of Cincinnati.
This race was a classic because it’s the only time I defeated my wife in a running race. Rosie always finished in the top ten women in every race for over a decade. Today was different. We began in downtown Fairborn, ran past Wright Patterson Air Force Base and then through hilly subdivisions before finishing along Main Street. Rosie finished as the 2nd Overall Woman running the 3.1 miles with a fast 20:11. Rosie went out very fast during the first mile and ran an incredible 5 minute 50 second first mile. Due to that fast start mile two and three were still fast but challenging and Rosie didn’t have her usual kick at the end. With a half mile to go to the finish line, runners started down a curving hill. I was feeling incredibly energized during the entire race and couldn’t believe I saw my wife ahead. I sprinted down the incline, slapped Rosie on the butt and ran by her. I gave it all I had that last half mile and crossed the finish line in 20:06. This was the fastest I had ever run a 5K in my life. I should have hung up my running shoes and retired right then and there. Rosie has paid hush money to keep this race unknown and out of the public eye, but the certificate below proves I beat her. To this day, I still brag about this race to her. Rosie ended up as the 2nd Overall Woman Finisher as well as winning her age 25-29 age group. She won a plaque, ribbon and a $40 restaurant gift card. Our friend Richard Robey placed fourth in his 40-49 age group.
Running Team: Rosie Miller, Dave Miller, Holly Miller
Date: 2001, 2002, 2003, Sept. 25, 2005
If I didn’t run the River Corridor Half Marathon, then we opted to run the 5K which began at University of Dayton Arena, ran to and through Carillon Park and ended at Welcome Stadium. In 2002, Rosie placed 2nd place in her age group. On September 25, 2005, Holly and Rosie ran the 5K and then cheered me on as I ran the half marathon celebrating my 50th birthday. I ran a two-hour 4-minute race. The year before in 2004, I bested my goal of breaking two hours by running the 13.1-mile race in one hour 54 minutes.
Billed as southwest Florida’s premiere pre-New Years Run, it was anything but that. Yes, I ran 3.1 miles on the beach with an amazing view, but the areas of loose sand slowed you down and was hard to run in. Most importantly, a rare winter cold front arrived the night before and instead of 63 weather it was 40 degrees at race time. The offshore winds made the wind chill even colder. Thank God I brought a toboggan with me to wear. So, it wasn’t a warm paradise but still a run with a great view.
Okay, this wasn’t my adventure since I am not a woman, although after receiving my sister’s cells for my leukemia bone marrow transplant, I still might morph into one, I include this race in our family memories because this was Holly’s first 3.1-mile race. It began and ended at DeWeese Park and the race route winded along the bike path that parallelled the Miami River. Rosie and Holly won ribbons.