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Gobble Gait raised $95,000 for Hastings Family Service

Krystal Foss of Hampton races toward the finish line of the 8K race. Star Gazette photo by Chad Richardson

The 15th annual Gobble Gait will go down as the biggest and best on record.

More than 3,300 participants took place. There were 1,462 pounds of food donated and $95,000 will be donated to Hastings Family Service, thanks to the runners and walkers who registered and the numerous donations from area businesses.

The contribution will likely grow as merchandise from the event continues to be sold at both MDK Design for Hair and at Hastings Family Service.

"We have a great community we live in," said Mary Fasbender, one of the event's organizers. "We're all very happy. We couldn't have done it without our sponsors and our volunteers. You can't help but feel thankful."

Fasbender said she and the organizers were watching the online registrations spike on Tuesday evening last week as the weather forecast kept looking better and better. At racetime, the temperature was 52 degrees.

Fasbender said that 456 athletes signed up for the event between Wednesday night and Thursday morning. Many of those people took part in the 2K run/walk, which had 1,180 participants this year, up from 700 last year.

"There were so many families this year," Fasbender said.

Two years ago, Gobble Gait raised $67,000.

Last year it raised $88,000.

With all the tragedies the Hastings community has faced in the recent months, the event appeared to be a way for people to come together, Fasbender said.

"We needed something good," she said. "Everyone just felt united."

The 8K men's race was won by Nick Ross of Hastings, who finished in 26 minutes and 13 seconds. Placing second was Dustin Harford (27:37) and Zack Benning of Hastings was third (27:41).

The women's race was won by Hastings' Jenny Wilcox, who had a time of 31:11. Kayla Huhnerkoch was second (32:54) and Heather Walseth was third (33:01).