Running to strengthen their communities

Civic groups create Southwest Nassau Run series


Four community-oriented races that have been run separately during the fall will now be tied together in the newly established Southwest Nassau Run Series, which will include the Malverne Run for Education on Oct. 6, the Inwood 5K on Oct. 13, the Five Towns Community Chest 5k Run/Walk on Oct. 20 and the Lynbrook Fly with the Owls 4-mile Run/Walk on Nov. 16.

Participants can pay a one-time $70 fee to register for all four events and the proceeds will benefit the individual nonprofit organizations that use the money to fund student scholarships, village programs and help other groups and individuals in their respective communities.

Mike DeRosa, an organizer of the Inwood 5K that is in its 20th year, said that involvement in the newly created run series is about expanding his event’s reach and supporting the other races. “We want to promote awareness for our race, while helping our neighboring races as well,” he said. Money from the race that starts and ends at Inwood Park pays for 12 high school senior scholarships in the Hewlett-Woodmere and Lawrence school districts.

In its third year, the Five Towns Community Chest event will run through Hewlett Bay Park and Hewlett Harbor. “We wanted to try to raise the profile of the race, increase the number of runners and try to make it bigger and better,” said Cal Nathan, one of the race coordinators. Sponsors for the event include Applebee’s, Panera Bread and the Cedarhurst-based Maidenbaum & Sternberg, LLP. Proceeds will benefit Community Chest’s “Neighbor in Need” program that aids families in the Five Towns.

It’s the ninth annual Lynbrook Fly with the Owls 4-mile Run/Walk and money from the event supports the Lynbrook High School post-prom breakfast, the middle school triathlon program, middle and high school athletic booster clubs, a community service scholarship for a graduating Lynbrook High senior and an Our Lady of Peace eighth grade student, along with civic activities in Lynbrook village and the school district.

“Partnerships are an integral part of strengthening our community,” said Cathy Papandrew, one of the race organizers. “We believe this partnership will strengthen our event thereby enabling Fly with the Owls to continue its services to the Lynbrook community that promote healthy. Drug and alcohol free activities and programs for our young people.”

Registration for the run series is underway. The registration deadline is Oct. 1. To register visit For more information call Five Towns Community Chest at (516) 374-5800.