Area Sports: Season openers and area events make adjustments

Runners cross the finish line during 2019's Run for the Lakes Marathon. Kelly Humphrey / Brainerd Dispatch

The Brainerd Jaycees Run for the Lakes scheduled for 8 a.m. April 25 has moved to a virtual format.

According to the website, all registrations have been transferred to be a virtual run for 2020. Participants are encouraged to run their distance the week of the event. There will be a Facebook live start at 8 p.m.

From the website: “You may complete your marathon, half marathon, relay, 10K, 5K, 1K, or ZeroK on your own time, wherever you shall choose. We encourage you to experience your virtual event during race week, April 19th-25th, 2020. You may complete your distance in sections or all at once; just remember to have fun. We would love to see all of your adventures no matter when you complete it, so don’t forget to include #runforthelakes when posting your photos to social media. We will be doing a live start on Facebook at 8 a.m. April 25th. With social posts throughout the day.”

T-shirts, medals and race packets will be mailed out after the event.

The race weekend begins with the 1K kids fun run and 5K run/walk that was scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Friday, April 24.


The rest of the events were to start at 8 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. April 25.

Interested runners can still register. Runners should register by April 25 to guarantee a T-shirt. Race fees are non-refundable. Online registration will close April 22.

North Central opener pushed back

The season opener of the North Central Speedway season was scheduled for April 18. That along with the April 25 date are canceled.

The first possible date on the schedule is May 2.

North Central’s 2020 Season Car Show is being conducted online. Interested participants can vote for their favorite cars through Facebook. There’s also a coloring contest for kids to win tickets to a race night.

NCS race promoter Holly Orpen said the season will start once Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz lifts the social distancing mandate.

Victory League

Victory League president Randy Heidmann joked that depending on what happens with baseball, area residents could really learn to be great anglers and golfers this summer.

“Right now the Minnesota Baseball Association State Board said there should be no games scheduled prior to May 1,” Heidmann said. “Our season, the Victory League season, actually starts on April 26, so right out of the shoot one game will have to be canceled. We just don’t know what will happen.


“My gut feeling is there may not be baseball until who knows when -- maybe June. When is MLB going to start?”

Heidmann said depending on how long the social distancing mandate lasts will determine if games are made up or if a whole new schedule is created. The region and division tournaments are scheduled so, depending on when the season actually starts, teams may just play a division schedule and go into the division playoffs.

The North Division, which is home to Nisswa, Fort Ripley, St. Mathias and Aitkin, is scheduled to play the East Division this season.

“The first couple of games might be the first time these teams actually get together,” Heidmann said. “They might have to be the first practices, but they’ll be league games. We might have to poll the other teams and find out what they want to do. Maybe they want to get a week of practice in and push the start of the season back another week. I get a feeling that some of the teams might just decide to start play.”

The St. Mathias Devils annual fish fry fundraiser scheduled for Friday, April 10, has been postponed to a date to be determined.

Covering the Brainerd lakes area sports scene for the past 23 years.
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