Clouds don't dampen spirits at Black Mountain Greenway Challenge

Fred McCormick
Black Mountain News

The sky over Pisgah Brewing Co. may have been gray April 7, but a few clouds couldn't keep hundreds of runners from supporting the town's greenway system. 

The 11th Annual Black Mountain Greenway Challenge 5K/10K, starting from Pisgah Brewing Co., raised about $7,100, race director Amy Parker said.

The 11th Annual Black Mountain Greenway Challenge 5K/10K, presented by the brewery, the town's recreation and parks department and the Black Mountain Greenway Commission, is the biggest annual fundraiser for local greenways. 

Runners made their way around Lake Tomahawk, the town's oldest and most widely used greenway.

The 2018 Challenge was supported by dozens of local sponsors. The two races, which are run simultaneously, drew 217 runners and raised around $7,100, according to race director Amy Parker. 

Runners who finished the races got a free beer from Pisgah Brewing Co. for their efforts.

The Challenge began at 2 p.m., when runners exited Pisgah Brewing Co. onto Old U.S. 70, heading east toward Tabernacle Road. Both courses took participants around Lake Tomahawk, the town's first and most-used greenway. 

The finish line was in front of Pisgah Brewing Co., where runners 21 years old and above were given a beer for completing the race. 

Participants in the 2018 Black Mountain Greenway Challenge 5K/10K make their way along Tabernacle Road as they head toward Cragmont Road.

Bryan White, of Weaverville, was the top finisher in the 10K, with a time of 39:53.8. The top female 10K finisher was Valerie Gortmaker, of Asheville, who crossed the line in 44:36.7. 

Bob Swarthout, of Boone, won the 5K with a time of 15:56.7. Indigo Monk, of Charlotte, was the first woman to cross the line in the 5K with a time of 25:05.1. 

Black Mountain Greenway Challenge runners enjoy a beer in front of Pisgah Brewing Co. after the race.