MVCEF Hosts Successful Knights Victory Race

The KVR race not only featured local participants, but also others who traveled from the Johnstown, Altoona, DuBois, State College and Lewistown areas. (Provided photo)

SMOKE RUN – The Moshannon Valley Community Education Foundation’s Knights Victory Race was held Sept. 29 at Muddy Run Raceway in Smoke Run. The foundation hosted more than 100 racers.

The obstacle course organizers used the Tough Mudder and Spartan Races as inspiration for the KVR. This year’s participants included past racers from the Tough Mudder and Spartan Races.

These hardcore racers said they had just as much fun at the KVR as in the Tough Mudder and Spartan Races. However, they wished for a wall climb, so organizers are working already to include this obstacle in future KVR events.

The honored race guest was Mr. Lowell Williams and his family. He’s a graduate of the Moshannon Valley High School and Lock Haven University. He served in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1992-2004 and also served as Staff Sergeant (SSG) in Iraq, 2003-2004 with the 629th Transportation CO. 

He is a member of the American Legion Freeberg Post 591, Houtzdale, and the VFW Stephen Branic Post 6321, Smithmill.  He’s employed by the state’s Department of Corrections and lives in Ramey with his wife and children.

Jonathan Sponsler, 15, of Clearfield won the overall event for males and overall best time at 27:04.(Provided photo)

Williams “Knighted” the overall winners of the event, Jonathan Sponsler, 15, Clearfield, 27:04 and Laura Renninger, 28, McClure, 34:28.  Each received $100 and free admittance to next year’s event. 

Each male and female winner in the following age groups received $50.

Male Racers

19 & Under, Ty Haines, 18, New Bethlehem, 29:17

20-29, Kevin Lingle, Clearfield, 30:02

30-39, Kristofer Keimig, 34, State College, 29:36

40-49, Larry Cusick, 41, Houtzdale, 35:00

50-59, George Franchock, 54, Port Matilda, 42:51

Female Racers

19 & under, Devan Sponsler, 17, Clearfield, 40:00

20-29, Kasey Haines, 22, DuBois, 34:37

30-39, Bethany Bannon, 32, Bedford, 36:13

40-49, Brenda Benninghoff, 40, Philipsburg, 42:20

50-59, Linda Franchock, 51, Port Matilda, 48:39.

This year, there weren’t any runners in the 60-69 age bracket.

Event timing was handled by David Eggler of Nittany Valley Running Club of State College.

Event organizers would like to thank everyone involved in making the race successful.

More than 1,000 photographs were taken by Stephanie Errigo Photography and her assistants Mary Englert Cusick and Jonathan Errigo. If anyone wishes to purchase pictures for gifts/posterity, or additional Dry Fit shirts from the race, please visit the Web site and click on the Knights Victory Race link for details.

If you would be interested in volunteering or being a sponsor for next year’s race event, or interested in assisting the foundation with its goals, please contact any of the following MVCEF board members Debora Kruise,, Doris Souder,, Elsie Harchak,, Rodney Kitko,,  Laura Mihalko,,

Joseph Cervenak, or Tonya DeVecchis-Kerr,

The Moshannon Valley Community Education Foundation is a 501(c)3 charitable organization dedicated to encouraging community-wide participation and philanthropy in order to enhance and expand enrichment opportunities for all students in the Moshannon Valley School District and to insure long-range financial flexibility for the schools within the district.  Monies raised by the Knights Victory Race and other means will be used to answer grant requests by the faculty, needs of the district submitted by the superintendent and for scholarships. 

Next year’s race promises to be even bigger than this year, with more obstacles and mud. The next KVR is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 28 at Muddy Run Raceway.

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