June 15, 2013
For immediate release

SRA athletes deliver in Juneteenth race benefiting St. HOPE Public Schools

Rocklin’s Charlie Brenneman and Roseville’s Stephanie Artis, teammates on the Sacramento Running Association’s Elite Team, won individual titles Saturday in the inaugural Freedom Mile in William Land Park.

Brenneman, 35, covered the road loop in 4 minutes and 31 seconds. The 37-year-old Artis finished in 5:54.9.

The Sacramento Running Association put on the race, which was part of the Juneteenth Festival and benefited St. HOPE Public Schools.

Brenneman, who works for the California Department of Insurance and coaches track and cross country at Whitney High School, said he enjoyed the course as it looped through the park.

“I like the road,” he said. “It feels like it’s over with quick.

“It’s hard to figure out pace. You just go and hope.”

Artis, a kindergarten teacher and co-founder of Freeplay Magazine, won despite still recovering from fractured ribs suffered in a recent mountain bike crash

“It felt a little arduous,” she said. “I just started running (again) three weeks ago.

“It was fun … A new way to get your speed work in.”

The race gave runners a rare chance to race a mile, a distance made famous by Great Britain’s Roger Bannister, who broke the 4-minute barrier with an electrifying 3:59.4 effort on May 6, 1954.

The Juneteenth Festival, which concludes Sunday with a golf tournament, is a celebration of the Emancipation Proclamation signed in 1863 by President Abraham Lincoln declaring all those held as slaves to be freed.

“It’s great for the community to celebrate the event and what it means,” St. HOPE Superintendent Jim Scheible said. “This gets kids out and gets them excited about running.”

St. HOPE Public Schools, a public charter school system with a focus on students from low-income and minority backgrounds, provides children with a high-quality, rigorous college preparatory education.

Strict accountability, rigorous standards, high expectations, increased learning time and the active involvement of parents, students, teachers and staff are emphasized.

The Sacramento Running Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to finding ways to encourage people of all ages and abilities to run. The SRA is committed to developing new, quality running events that appeal to a broad variety of runners.

Other SRA events include the recent Gold Rush 100k, the Folsom Blues Breakout Half Marathon on Oct. 19, the California International Marathon on Dec. 8, the Super Bowl Sunday 10k Run on Feb. 2 and the Credit Union SACTOWN Ten-Mile Run on April 6.

SRA beneficiaries include the American River Parkway, youth fitness programs, local running venues and aspiring young runners.