Kayak photo for online

RIDGWAY — Active outdoor enthusiasts are invited to run, bike or kayak as part of a new fundraiser in Ridgway Saturday.

The 2019 Ridgway YMCA fitness challenge will include a 5-mile run, 15-mile bike-time trail and 1-mile kayak and canoe-time trail. Registration will be held at the Tricounty Rails-to-Trails trailhead at the corner of Center and Water streets.

The run will start at 9 a.m. at the Tri-County Rails-to-Trails trailhead, following the hills of Route 949. The bike-time trail will also start at the trailhead at 10:30 a.m., with cyclists enduring a 15-mile course along Route 949 as well, the same course used in the Ridgway Triathlon. The scenic course includes two mild climbs and a “flowing” trip through the rolling hills, according to the Ridgway YMCA’s website.

The 1-mile downstream kayak-time trail will take participants down the Clarion River. Paddlers will be given starting times in one-minute increments, with the event starting at noon. Basketball skill challenges will also be held at the Frank Clark Memorial Courts.

Each event is separated into male and female categories and different age groups.

Awards ceremonies will follow each event, and a chicken dinner will be served to racers at the Ridgway Fire Hall on North Broad Street.

Mary Lynne Bellotti, executive director of the Ridgway YMCA, said the fitness challenge is a new event, with proceeds helping to sustain youth programs.

“Although memberships and donations help sustain our Y, we rely on fundraisers to make our programs the best that they can be,” she said.

Participants can take part in one event or all three, as well as a team event, where three participants run, bike and kayak, Bellotti said.

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