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Bridges, butterflies, history

Less than a year after its inception, Selma City Schools’ Butterflies and Bridges Run looms again.

This year’s offering places an emphasis on showcasing Selma’s historic landmarks. Last year’s event took place in early August at Bloch Park. This year’s event will be held on May 16 at Selma High School.

Participants have the option of running in a four-mile competitive run, two-person relay and two-mile fun run/walk. All three will use a route designed to take advantage of Broad Street’s painted butterflies and the Edmund Pettus Bridge.

“We learned that this was something the community in itself was asking for an event like this to take place,” said Selma athletic director Patrick Evans. “The response we received was great, and everyone wanted to see this race continue annually. They wanted our route to be something that more or less identifies with the city of Selma.”

Race planners have learned a few things for the second time around as well.

“The staff is a little bigger, the sponsors are bigger,” said Evans. “We’re expecting a better amount of money to be raised.”

Like last year, a portion of race proceeds are earmarked for lower participation sports, including track and field, volleyball, baseball and softball. But this year, city elementary and middle schools will also share in the proceeds.

Increases in participation and youth involvement are other stated goals of this year’s race.

Seventy-six participated last year, but event organizers expect a 500-person field this year.

“We just want more students to get involved in this race,” said Tameka Little, director of Vaughan Wellness and Fitness. “This is for the students.”

Pre-registration is $15, up until the day of the race, and late registration is $20 or the day of the race. Students can pre-reregister for $7 or register late for $10. Participants can register at Vaughan Wellness and Fitness or the Selma City Schools main office. Online registration is also available at www. Selmacityschools.org.