After more than a year of hearing commentary and suggestions from the Run 169 Towns Society
Membership, a working group of the Founding Members met on Wednesday, February 8th and Sunday, February 19th, 2017, to conduct a comprehensive review of the Society’s Mission Statement, Definitions, Participant Requirements, and Policies & Procedures. Seven of the Eight Founders participated directly or indirectly in the review. While full consensus was not achieved on each issue, all points had no less than five of the eight Founders in agreement.
The following document updates the Run 169 Towns Society Mission Statement, Definitions and Policies & Procedures.
This version reflects updates to Definition items 2, 8 and 14 voted by a Board of Directors meeting held on March 22, 2017 and a Founders meeting on April 9, 2017.
All previous versions of Bylaws, Policies, Procedures, Definitions or Rules are superseded by this document which best reflects the current status of The Society’s evolving composition.
Do Every Blessed Town in Connecticut (DEBTiConn), now called the Run 169 Towns Society, is a group of runners formed by women and men who aspire to run a race in every town in the State of Connecticut.
Realizing that racing successfully in every Connecticut town may be a lifetime accomplishment, the Founders of this Society have formulated a set of policies, procedures and definitions to recognize and validate runners’ attempts to achieve this goal.
DEFINITIONS / PARTICIPANT REQUIREMENTS
1. Towns – There are 169 towns in Connecticut. Most towns contain several villages. Completion of races within two or more villages of the same town constitutes completion of only one town. Listings and a map of official Connecticut towns are available on the DEBTiConn website and other Internet sources.
2. Official Race – An official race is an outdoor event, no less than one mile in distance, open to the public, advertised by newspaper postings, flyers, postings on major running related websites (e.g., HitekRacing, Cool Running, RunningintheUSA,), race management companies web sites and town web sites.
An official race is timed and the results are usually posted publicly.
An official race will count for the town in which the start line is located.
An official race is usually organized / planned by (or for) a charity or cause, an organization, agency, school, religious group associated with a particular town.
Note 1: Invitational only and indoor events are not eligible for town credit.
Note 2: Self timed and self-starting events are not eligible for town credit.
Note 3: If an official race offers “Early” or “Late” start options, runners may avail themselves of those opportunities and may submit the town for credit as long as they are included in the official race results.
Note 4: The run portion of duathlons or triathlons may be counted toward town completion based upon the town in which the run begins and the participant must be listed in the official results. (If the participant is running as a du/triathlon team member, he/she should ensure the team results are recorded under the 169 member’s name - e.g., Team “Jane Doe”).
Note 5: Unlike du/triathlons where an individual completes the entire run event, participation in relay races will not be eligible for town credit.
Note 6: Historical exceptions include the Salmon River Race which starts in East Hampton, but counts as Colchester. The legendary nature and difficulty of the mid-January Jurale Tradition Run allows it to count as Meriden town completion.
3. Race Participant – The participant must meet all the requirements of an official race (as described above) for town credit. These requirements are:
A. Complete race registration
B. Meet race entry requirements- e.g., fees, donations, waivers, etc.
C. Meet race identification requirements, e.g., bibs, timing chips, and/or other forms of participant identification.
D. Participant completion times must be included on official race results and are ideally posted on major running websites.
E. Complete at least 50% of the designated race distance abbreviated only due to injury, illness or unanticipated emergency.
4. Race Directing – It is strongly recommended that members who are contemplating race directing, contact/consult a race management company to assist with planning a race for the entire running community. These companies can help in addressing all aspects of a race prior to planning the event. The Society name is not to be affiliated with any particular race.
5. DEBTiConn – Do Every Blessed Town in Connecticut- This was the original name of the Run 169 Towns Society. “Run 169,” “The Run 169 Society,” or “169’ers” are also commonly heard of terms when referring to our organization.
6. Founders- The original eight members of DEBTiConn.
7. Queens and Kings – Those members who have completed an official race in each of the Connecticut’s 169 towns.
8. Board of Directors (BOD) – Comprised of Founders, Queens and Kings and active Officers . The BOD shall not exceed 23 people. A quorum would be 12 people. A BOD member choosing Emeritus status (see Definition #14) would be replaced by the next Queen/King in succession.
9. Officers - Members voluntarily performing valuable and specific services for the Society. Officers are selected and vetted by the Board of Directors.
10. Vested Members – Individuals who have been in the Society for at least six months and have completed 85 or more towns. May be called upon by the BOD for input regarding changes/updates to Policies and Procedures.
11. Town Ambassador – First member from a town to join the Society who agrees to spread good will among runners in their town. Ambassadors notify the Society of local official races not posted on widely circulated race calendars.
12. Cross Country Events – Current middle school and high school students who are members of their cross country (XC) teams may take credit for towns where their meets occur if they satisfactorily complete those running events. The maximum town credits allowed under those conditions are ten.
Note 1: The minimum distance for the race event must be at least 1.5 miles which is the norm for middle school events.
Note 2: XC credits will be redeemed through the “Submit Race” Page and authenticated by the parent or legal guardian in the comment section on the DEBTiConn web page.
Note 3: If an XC credit is replaced by an official race, another XC town credit may be redeemed but not to exceed ten at any time. If a cross country meet credit is replaced by an official race it must also be submitted through the “Submit Race” Page and so noted in the comment section on the DEBTiConn web page.
13. Walkers – The Society welcomes walkers willing to go the distance. Walkers must register for the race distance and be included in the official race results and rankings.
14. Emeritus Status - Queens, Kings and Officers, who are unable, or no longer wish, to engage in the responsibilities of being on the Board of Directors may request their membership status be designated as "Emeritus”. Their input to BOD actions will no longer be sought nor required, but their previous achievements and contributions to the Society will continue to be held in high regard. Emeritus Queens and Kings will be invited to assist the currently reigning Queen and King at award presentations and other Society celebrations, their names on the Society’s membership rolls will be annotated with an “E” designator.
POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
Each individual member shall conduct her/himself in a manner respectful of other runners, the community in which one is participating, and the entire “running community.” Respectful behavior shall include actions and language.
Society members are provided a copy of the current ethics policy and procedural instructions for submitting town completions upon joining.
2. Communication, Liability, Recognition
A. Any new initiative or policy augmentation needs to be communicated to and approved by the Board of Directors prior to implementation. This shall encompass logos, races, events and other related items.
B. The Society bears no responsibility for arrangements made between/among members, including group training, carpools, child care, after race parties, etc. Nor does the Society bear any liability for individual decisions regarding race attendance (to include choice of race venue, time, or number of races in which a member chooses to participate).
C. Individual members should not use the Society’s name when seeking personal discounts on race fees, running apparel, lodging, meals, etc.
D. An appropriate plaque will be presented (usually at an awards dinner or picnic) to those who complete all 169 towns. Members (or their family/friends) should contact the current Awards Officer at least one month prior to their anticipated town completion to verify citation spelling and make payment arrangements for the plaque.
3. Fees and Dues-
There are no dues or fees collected to be a member.
4. Underage Members
Minors age 17 and under are welcomed into the Society with written permission from their parents or legal guardian. One can download the Age Waiver Form by going to the DEBTiConn website. Click here
The Copyright of Run 169 apparel does not permit for additional statements, logos, messages or political comment. The blue and gold colors are authentic to the Society apparel, banners and medallions. The colors may not be changed unless approved by the Founders.
6. Running Clubs
Running Clubs throughout Connecticut shall be honored by the Society. The Society intent is to work harmoniously with running clubs and inform/encourage any club member who wishes to pursue the goal of running in all 169 Connecticut towns according to the adopted rules.
When running a race for one’s club and it’s a USATF sanctioned race where one is competing for points, use your personal USATF # for those events. Town completion may still be granted for these races as long as all official race criteria have been met.
The Run 169 Towns Society is NOT a USATF club.
Updated as of: May 29, 2017 Final Version
Distributed to Board of Directors by email on : June 5 , 2017
Posted to the DEBTiConn webpage www.debticonn.org on: June 14, 2017
Posted to the Run 169 Towns Society Facebook Page on: June 14, 2017
Sent to membership by email on: June 14, 2017
Wheels and Heels 5K road race in Harwinton raises money for trail
By NF Ambery, Special to the Register
POSTED: 06/06/15, 10:12 PM EDT
HARWINTON >> Adam Osmond of Farmington, one of the founding members of the statewide running club Run 169 Towns Society, gathered with his fellow members prior to Saturday afternoon’s second annual Wheels and Heels 5K Road Race on Valley Road in Harwinton. The club, which makes a point of running Connecticut races, brought 20 members, bringing the event’s total attendance to 49 runners and walkers. The race raised approximately $980 plus $1,000 in local sponsors’ donations for the purpose of creating a local handicapped-access trail along the Naugatuck River Greenway.
“We make a point of participating in local runs,” Osmond said. He added there were about 700 members statewide in the Run 169 Towns Society. It is a tradition that when a member completes a 169th race, he or she wears a tutu during the celebratory race. Click here to keep reading.
By PAT EATON-ROBB
The Associated Press
Published: August 31, 2014
CORNWALL, Conn. — Karen Rogers has run a road race in every one of Connecticut’s 169 cities and towns, an accomplishment that has given her the title “Queen of the Debticonns.”
Debticonn – short for Do Every Blessed Town in Connecticut – is a label used by members of the Run 169 Towns Society, a group of recreational runners of all skill levels who travel the state entering road races.
Rogers, 63, of Clinton, helped found the organization in 2012 with seven other runners.
“Lo and behold, there were like eight of us that were trying to do this, and we kept running into each other at different races,” she said. “So we just decided to form a society.”
The group has grown to 326 members, with 33 people joining in just the last month. Runners record races on the group’s website.
Races only count if they are official timed events. Members only get credit for the town in which a race starts. So those running the Hartford Marathon, for example, don’t get to add South Windsor or East Hartford to their list.
There are a handful of towns that have never hosted a race. Members can get credit for those towns by organizing their own run on an approved day, with at least three participants. But if an official race comes to that town, the Debticonns must run it, or they lose credit for that town.
Runners get a certificate for completing races in all eight Connecticut counties during a single calendar year and a plaque if they race in all 169 towns, no matter how long it takes.
So far just two people have done that: Rogers and co-founder Bob Davis of Naugatuck, the group’s “king.”
“It’s a fun way to make the sport even more fun,” said Adam Osmond (81 towns completed), who runs the group’s website and Facebook page and keeps track of all the races. “People make a day trip; they carpool together. It’s created friendships all over the state." Click here to keep reading. Posted by Adam Osmond
By Melanie Savage - Staff Writer Coventry - posted Tue., Oct. 8, 2013 Adam Osmond displays a map showing the 44 different Connecticut towns in which he has competed in road races thus far. Osmond is a member of DebtiConn (Do Every Blessed Town in Connecticut), a group whose members aspire to run a race in each of the state's 169 towns. Photos by Adam Osmond displays a map showing the 44 different Connecticut towns in which he has competed in road races thus far. Osmond is a member of DebtiConn (Do Every Blessed Town in Connecticut), a group whose members aspire to run a race in each of the state's 169 towns. Photos by Melanie Savage. Click here to keep reading.
Hundreds come to Meriden for Tradition Run
Amanda L. Webster | Posted: Sunday, January 27, 2013 10:17 pm
MERIDEN — Despite the biting cold that has settled over the state during the past week, runners from all over Connecticut showed up for the Bernie Jurale Memorial Tradition Run Sunday morning.
About 275 people gathered at Hubbard Park for the event’s 44th year despite temperatures well below freezing.
“Some like it colder,” said Jane Earnest, administrative facility coordinator for Meriden Parks and Recreation.
Runners are generally a hardy group and weather isn’t an issue most years, but with temperatures not rising much above 20 most of the week, race officials were concerned, Earnest said. The good news was that temperatures were a little warmer Sunday.
“This is probably the coldest year that we’ve ever worked,” said Earnest.
Some participants saw the slight rise in temperature and clear skies as perfect conditions for a run.
First time participant Adam Osmond said he was extremely excited to make his way up the trail.
“I was driving down 691 and I saw the top of the hill and thought, ‘Holy cow! I’ve got to get up there!’ ” he said.
Osmond explained that he dealt with the cold by wearing plenty of layers and expected to do fine.
The trail up to Castle Craig is 3.1 miles long and many of the runners made the journey both up and down.
Vans awaited those at the top who preferred a ride back down.
People came to participate in the run for various reasons.
“This is more like a training run, get ready for half marathons,” said Darrell Netto, of Colchester. Netto said that he usually runs about 50 to 60 races a year and that the Tradition Run was a way to help condition him for an upcoming half marathon in his hometown.
Ken Vestergaard, of Cheshire, showed up with his entire family in tow to run in memory of Ken’s father, Erik Vestergaard, who passed away in December.
“My dad got me into this back in the early 80s,” said Vestergaard. “It was a dad-son challenge. My dad was always here but I wasn’t as faithful until the last 10 years. It’s turned into a family challenge.”
Vestergaard, his wife and four children, along with his brother, all came out to honor the man who made the TraditionRun a family tradition.
“This year it’s a little emptier,” Vestergaard said, remembering his father.
The race began at 10 a.m. for those who wanted to walk and at 10:30 a.m. for those who wanted to run. Runners started arriving at the top about 20 minutes after they started.
Race officials said they never confirmed the name of the man who finished first because he ran back down the hill and left the park before they could speak to him.
Whitney Watts of Cheshire was the second person to finish.
“The hill is killer,” said Watts as he stopped to catch his breath. “It was a little cold but not too bad once you get going. At least it wasn’t snowing.” Click here to keep reading. Posted by Adam Osmond
Running A Race In Every Town
8:37 PM EDT, October 20, 2012
Runners are always looking for new challenges. So before Karen Rogers turned 50, she started thinking about trying to run 50 marathons in 50 states.
But the travel was expensive, the training extensive and Rogers, of Clinton, decided to stick a little closer to home with her goal: How about running a race in all 169 towns in Connecticut?
That was in 1998. She turned 50 in 1999. Her goal was to run 50 races that year and she did.
"That's when I thought, 'This is doable,'" she said. "Connecticut is probably the 'racing-est' state. There is a race almost every single weekend."
She found herself starting one race at 8 in the morning, say, in Durham, and ending up running another in Greenwich that afternoon, just because she "needed" both towns and the races happened to fall on the same day.
Rogers completed her 13-year quest in November of 2011 with a "virtual race" in Ledyard. Like some towns in the state, Ledyard doesn't have a road race. After about six months of checking with town officials and trying to figure out how to get an official race going (to no avail), Rogers and a group of fellow DEBTiConn (Do it in Every Blessed Town in Connecticut) runners descended upon Ledyard and had their own race, and Rogers became the first of the 18-member group to race in Every Blessed Town. Click here to keep reading
RANDALL BEACH: These 'driven' runners are on a statewide, 169-town quest
Published: Sunday, September 09, 2012
By Randall Beach, Register Staff
firstname.lastname@example.org / Twitter: @rbeachnhr
There’s a group of people for virtually every cause or endeavor, so why not a society of folks who want to run in a race in every town in Connecticut?
I met one of these people in Prospect seven years ago. Ric Villarreal had made it to about 125 of the state’s 169 towns at that point. And he ran them barefoot.
Recently, I heard about another guy pursing this quest, North Haven’s Steve Mele, and he told me there’s a whole pack of them working on this goal.
When I visited Mele at his condo to find out more, he was all suited up in his running shirt advertising “CT 169 Towns Society.” The front of the shirt said “Running is my happy hour.”
The society also calls itself DEBTiConn: Do Every Blessed Town in Connecticut. Click here to keep reading.
Karen Rogers has become the ultimate road racing townie
By Joe Wojtas
Publication: The Day
Published 06/03/2011 12:00 AM
Updated 06/03/2011 01:12 AM
One hundred and sixty-three down. Three to go.
For the past 11 years, Karen Rogers of Clinton has been trying to run a race in all of Connecticut's 169 towns and cities.
Her first year, she knocked out 50 as she met her goal of running 50 races in the year she turned 50 years of age.
Since then she has crisscrossed the state, slowly chipping away at her goal. Along the way, several other people have joined her quest although she is the furthest along.
As she got down to the final 10 or so towns, she ran into a problem — they didn't have races. Click here to keep reading.
An Addict Runs To Recover
Lori Riley 7:28 PM EDT, April 26, 2014 In 2008,
Adam Osmond hit bottom. He was a gambling addict. He lost his two stores in New Britain, where he used to play thousands of dollars worth of lottery tickets a day. When he told his wife and his family, he was ashamed and depressed. He wasn't healthy. He took a leave of absence from his job as an accountant and ended up leaving the position. "I went through a lot at that point," said Osmond, who lives in Farmington. "I went through hell." He went into a gambling addiction treatment program. That helped. But then he met Charlie Merlis. Merlis wore shirts from road races to meetings. Curious, Osmond asked him about the shirts. Merlis told him that he should come run a race with him. And that's how Osmond, 46, traded one addiction for another. In 2011, he finished his first 5K race in just under 40 minutes, and not only did he think he was going to die that day, he couldn't imagine that people actually ran farther distances than that. On Sunday, he will run an ultramarathon, the Lake Waramaug 50K (approximately 31 miles) in New Preston. He hopes to finish in about 5 hours and 30 minutes, approximately 10 ½ minutes per mile, which is faster than the pace in which he ran his first 5K three years ago. "Running is a great addiction," said Merlis, of West Hartford. "You can throw your heart into it and you know you're not hurting yourself." Click here to keep reading. Posted by Adam Osmond
Runners aim to race in all 169 towns
By PAT EATON-ROBB Associated Press Publication: The Day Published September 01. 2014 4:00AM Cornwall - Karen Rogers has run a road race in every one of Connecticut's 169 cities and towns, an accomplishment that has given her the title "Queen of the Debticonns." Debticonn - short for Do Every Blessed Town in Connecticut - is a label used by members of the Run 169 Towns Society, a group of recreational runners of all skill levels who travel the state entering road races. Rogers, 63, of Clinton, helped found the organization in 2012 with seven other runners.
"Lo and behold, there were like eight of us that were trying to do this, and we kept running into each other at different races," she said. "So we just decided to form a society." The group has grown to 326 members, with 33 people joining in just the last month. Runners record races on the group's website. Races only count if they are official timed events. Members only get credit for the town in which a race starts. So those running the Hartford Marathon, for example, don't get to add South Windsor or East Hartford to their list...... Click here to keep reading. Posted by Adam Osmond
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