'Patriots run' at Valley Forge again

Runners finish five miles around Valley Forge National Historical Park to support a marathoner fined for running in the park during the shutdown.
Runners finish five miles around Valley Forge National Historical Park to support a marathoner fined for running in the park during the shutdown. (KELSEY ANNE DUBINSKY / Staff)
Posted: October 15, 2013

Several dozen runners jogged more than five miles on the roads around Valley Forge National Historical Park on Sunday morning to protest the park's being shuttered during the partial federal government shutdown.

The runners were inspired after John Bell, a Chadds Ford marathoner, received a $100 ticket last week for jogging in the park during the closure.

Several runners' groups, including Bell's group, Runderlust, gathered at 9 a.m. for what they dubbed a "Patriots' Run."

The park has popular running trails free of traffic. The runners on Sunday, however, stayed on the shoulder of roads that circle and cut through the park - and that remain open to car traffic.

Wearing bright shirts, they stayed mostly in single file, running at times within feet of the trails.

"No laws were broken, but our message was clear: Open the trail," one of the organizers, George Fenzil, said on the Keystone Multisport Club website.

Bell, who also took part in the run Sunday, has said he plans to fight his ticket.

A group of veterans was scheduled to protest the park's closure Sunday afternoon.


tgraham@phillynews.com

215-854-2730

@troyjgraham

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