Ryan Raymond

Seventh annual McGregor Mug Run a huge success

 

 

By Christian Bouchard

 

The seventh annual McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival saw nearly 300 runners flock to Co-An Park Saturday to run and raise awareness for Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario.

Runners had a choice of running either 5km or 10km, with both distances being half road course through town and the other half being on a greenway trail.

From left to right: Joaquim Lourenco, Andrew Aguanno, Michael Gamberta, Ivo Oljacic and Tyler Rowles compete in the seventh annual McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival race at Co-An Park in McGregor.

According to Ryan Raymond, event coordinator, the event is now in its seventh year and has seen tremendous growth over the years.

“The first year we had about 40 people and it was all family as they felt like they had to come out to support me,” said Raymond. “Fast-forward to this year and we’re just shy of 300 runners. I’m very happy with the growth and I’d say the word of mouth is out there about this race.”

Proceeds raised from both the race and the beer festival will benefit Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario. Also included is a dinner to be held at the McGregor K of C in October. While Raymond does not have final numbers, he estimated they will hit their target.

“Our goal was at least $5,000 this year and I think we should get there as numbers for the run are up and the beer festival pre-sales are up as well,” said Raymond. “Fingers crossed but I think we’ll hit that $5,000 mark.”

With the bulk of participants being from the Windsor-Essex region, the event also had runners from Blenheim, Oakville and Kitchener to compete in the race.

Justin Hunt (left) and event coordinator Ryan Raymond sprint to the finish line at the seventh annual McGregor Mug Run last Saturday.

“Of all the years doing this, I’ve never talked to one person who hasn’t had a blast in this race,” added Raymond.” This must be the best year for the race. And for the beer festival, just look at all the cars. Two hours from now the field is going to be full.”

Joaquim Lourenco of Harrow was the first to cross the 5km finish line with a time of 18:55:94 while Andrew Aguanno of Windsor was the first to cross the 10 km line with a time of 32:44:79. Kelly Jean of Belle River was the top female in the 5km race and Alex Vorshuk of Windsor was the top female runner in the 10 km race.

McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival steps up game in sixth year

 

By Jolene Perron

With a big name presenting sponsor on their side, the McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival was able to not only attract an additional 120 registered runners this year, bringing them just shy of the 300 mark, but they also brought a headlining country band to their stage, amounting to what the event coordinator called “the best year by far.”

While the hot weather had a bit of a toll on the running portion of the event, and only saw 238 finishers, event coordinator Ryan Raymond said they had about 750 people, which is a significant increase to last year’s 580.

Despite the steamy temperatures and beating sun, the McGregor Mug Run brought out over 300 runners Saturday to run and raise money for Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario.

The event, which started only six years ago, started small with what Raymond calls “a controlled growth.”

“For the first couple of years we just dipped our toes, make sure we knew what we were doing, so that when it comes to something like this that we are fully set and hopefully no surprises. We just slowly grew it,” explained Raymond. “I just wanted this to be this huge race in 10 years where people would said ‘What? McGregor has 5,000 people running?’ that’s what I want to build it up to, to have this big crazy event that people ask ‘McGregor Ontario? That little town?’”

The event was based out of Co-An Park.

The event brought together 12 breweries, both local and from out of town. The event added LIUNA625 as a presenting sponsor, who Raymond credits for allowing them to have country star Eric Ethridge take the stage Saturday evening. At the end of it all, all of the proceeds raised at the event will benefit Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario.

Amy Crowelle, Brendon Basher, Hugh Price and David Price enjoy cold beers at the McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival Saturday.

“We raised a total of $3,450 for Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario this year,” said Raymond. “This was in big part because of my sister Kristy Raymond who organized a charity dinner at the K of C and worked with The epilepsy Southwestern Ontario to run a 50/50 draw that brought in $450 for both the winner and the charity.”
New this year was also the shuttle service provided by Amherstburg Chevrolet Buick GMC, which Raymond said was very well received.

“This is by far the best year. The set up is amazing, the runners are phenomenal, the breweries are amazing, the bands are amazing, the food trucks are awesome, it’s just a really awesome year.”

McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival returns Sept. 23

 

Runners and beer lovers will hit the streets and raise a mug for the sixth annual McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival this September.

The event returns Saturday, September 23 at Co-An Park in McGregor.

Event director Ryan Raymond said craft beer fanatics will get the chance to taste some of the best craft offerings Ontario has to offer. The brewery line up to date includes local favourites BREW, Frank Brewing Co., Walkerville, as well as Muskoka Brewery, Flying Monkeys, Bayside Brewing Co. and Dusty Boots Hard Root Beer. There will also be event newcomers such as Red Line Brewhouse and Beau’s All Natural Brewing Co.

An offering of international favourites will also be made available.

McGregor Mug Run

More breweries to be announced throughout the summer months, he stated via a press release.

Two stages of entertainment will house local and independent musicians including Kelsi Mayne, Years or Ernest and CCMA award winning musician Eric Ethridge, while guests can grab some local food, play oversized beer pong, or lounge outside in Muskoka chairs. To enter the beer fest, people must be 19-years-old or older and Raymond said “this will be strictly enforced.”

The race portion of the event will include both a 5km and a 10km run/walk with a start time of 4 p.m. sharp. People do not have to participate in the race to attend the beer fest or vice-versa.

The organizing committee has decided that it is important to keep the “back yard party vibes” of the event and therefore have decided that a maximum of 1,000 tickets to the beer fest will be made available and no more than 500 for the race portion of the event.

Tickets are available now with the option to either run, attend the beer festival, or do both.

Organizers state that “as always, the McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival is committed to contributing back to the community and has once again partnered with Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario.”

Runners leave the starting line in front of Co-An Park at the McGregor Mug Run last Saturday afternoon.

Runners leave the starting line in front of Co-An Park at the McGregor Mug Run during the 2016 event.

A charity dinner will also be held Sept. 16 at the Knights of Columbus Hall in McGregor. The dinner is sponsored in part by Frank Brewing co. and will include live entertainment.

Strickland’s Auto has partnered with the event again this year to offer door-to-door shuttles free of charge, Raymond pointed out. Donations to the charity are always welcome. Shuttles are available in Essex, Harrow, Amherstburg and Windsor.

To learn more about the McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival including registration, full schedule, directions, and more, visit www.McGregorMugRun.com. People can also follow the McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival on Twitter at @McGregorBeerFst, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/McGregorMugRun and on Instagram @mcgregor_beer_fest.

For sponsorship opportunities please contact Lori Ostrow at Lori@McGregorMugRun.com.

Mug Run & International Beer Festival flows through McGregor

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The McGregor Mug Run saw hundreds hit the roads of McGregor with participants and other people cool off afterwards with a cold one.

The fifth annual Mug Run took place Saturday afternoon with the International Beer Festival following the race at Co-An Park. Fifteen craft breweries, some from around Windsor-Essex, others from around the province and some with roots overseas, came to the park for the festivities.

Runners leave the starting line in front of Co-An Park at the McGregor Mug Run last Saturday afternoon.

Runners leave the starting line in front of Co-An Park at the McGregor Mug Run last Saturday afternoon.

Ryan Raymond, one of the many who organized Saturday’s McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival, was pleased with how things went.

“This year is, by far, the best yet,” he said. “It’s, by far, the best weather.”

There was a 5K run and a 10K run with it being a road course for half of it with the other half being on a greenway trail.

“I think we’re a little over 300,” he said of the run participants.

Proceeds raised will benefit the Epilepsy Support Centre and that includes not just Saturday’s event, but a dinner they held earlier this month at the McGregor Knights of Columbus Hall and a breakfast buffet Sunday, also at the McGregor K of C.

Runners came from as far as Toronto, London and Hamilton with several “elite” caliber runners coming to the area this year to participate.

Laura Desjardins is the first woman to cross the finish line in the 5K and second person overall.

Laura Desjardins is the first woman to cross the finish line in the 5K and second person overall.

Raymond is thrilled with how the event has grown in its first five years.

“It’s getting there, absolutely,” he said with a smile.

The start of the race was highlighted with a flyover by the Windsor Yellow Birds, as they flew planes reminiscent of planes flown in previous wars.

“They helped us out last year and this year,” said Raymond.

The beer festival component has grown as well as the run, he added, stating organizers have been inundated with texts, messages and calls about it.

“We’re already looking forward to 2017,” he said. “We’re going to try and outdo ourselves but it gets harder every year.”

McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival hits Co-An Park

 

Participants in the McGregor Mug Run leave from the starting line Aug. 22.

Participants in the McGregor Mug Run leave from the starting line Aug. 22.

By Ron Giofu

 

The McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival returned Saturday and saw and increased number of participants in both components of the fundraiser.

Organizers report more runners took part this year with more breweries also part of the beer festival that followed it. There was a committee of seven people planning the event this year with member Ryan Raymond stating about 350 people participated in the run.

“It’s about 100 more than last year,” said Raymond.

Much of the growth has come through word-of-mouth advertising, he said, with three more breweries taking part in the beer festival. Raymond noted that there were 16 brands this year and it wasn’t just craft breweries. Most of the local breweries were in attendance but others came in from outside the area.

“We’re trying to represent as many countries as possible,” he said.

The event raised money for three causes this year – the Epilepsy Support Centre, the Essex Region Conservation Foundation’s “Trail On!” campaign and Co-An Park. The “Trail On!” campaign is raising money for the Essex-Amherstburg greenway spur.

Nicko Mammonas pours a beer at the McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival last Saturday at Co-An Park.

Nicko Mammonas pours a beer at the McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival last Saturday at Co-An Park.

Raymond was thankful to all the sponsors, and noted McGregor businesses such as the Knights of Columbus Hall and LaRocca tavern stepped in to provide assistance.

“Co-An Park has been fabulous to work with,” he added.

Stating the McGregor Mug Run & International Beer Festival is a “fun community event,” Raymond added it was started not only to have fun but to help out the community where they can.

“This is what it has grown into,” he said. “It’s getting bigger and bigger every year.”

Nicko Mammonas of Walkerville Brewery said he was happy to be part of the event this year.

“I love to see the amount of craft breweries and craft beer,” he said. “It’s a friendly community.”

The festival had good beer and good music, so he believed it to be a good time too.

“What else do you need?” he asked. “It’s a good combination.”