On a sunny and brisk Sunday, February 20th, 2022, 3,200 runners from the local area and 40 states took their places at the start line in the New Urbanism town of Seaside, Florida, to participate in the 20th running of the Seaside School Half Marathon and 5K. The Seaside School Foundation reported that over $700,000 was raised to benefit the Seaside School, Inc., through Seaside Race Weekend efforts.
100% of the funds raised from the race weekend benefit the Seaside School Foundation, which supports the ongoing operational needs, endowment, and capital projects for the Seaside Neighborhood School and Seacoast Collegiate High School.
The Seaside School, the oldest operating charter school and #3 combination school in the State of Florida, is a tuition-free, public charter school serving students across Walton County.
“The money raised during the race weekend is critical to keeping our school doors open,” said Patrick McCarthy, President of the Seaside School Foundation. “Hundreds of students rely on this annual fundraising event. Without the race and the community that supports it, Seaside Neighborhood School and Seacoast Collegiate High School could not provide their unique student experience and reach such high levels of student achievement.”
Half Marathon male champion Steven Cornelius, 41, of Valparaiso, FL, sprinted his way into first place, finishing the half marathon in 1:12:00.01. The women’s half marathon winner, Rachel Kennedy, 33, of Fort Walton Beach, FL, finished strong with a time of 1:25:54.74. Jacob Russell Lister, 23, of Birmingham, AL won the male division of the 5K race with a time of 15:00.26 and Scarlett Griffin, 13, of Santa Rosa Beach, FL, was the women’s 5K winner with a time of 20:36.84. Additionally, Seaside School 8th grade student Calvin Chilton finished fifth in the 5K with a time of 19:32.71 and William Justiss, 8th grader at Seaside School, completed the Half Marathon in 1:49:37.72.
“Our community of runners, supporters, volunteers, students, and staff were excited to be back in person, celebrating the race weekend as well as our acclaimed Taste of the Race culinary event,” said Teresa Horton, Executive Director of the Seaside Schools Foundation. “The Seaside School is fortunate to be part of such a philanthropic community that rallied to raise significant funds that are essential to our operation and allow us to thrive in a very special way.”
The charity race weekend kicked off on Friday, February 18th with an evening under the stars at the annual race pre-party, Taste of the Race hosted by Tom Glavine, Major League Baseball Hall of Famer and former Atlanta Braves’ pitcher, and the Corchis Family, owners of Amici 30A Italian Kitchen and Amigo’s 30A Mexican Kitchen restaurants. Nearly 700 party-goers attended the Seaside party and fifteen local chefs competed for top culinary awards. Wild Bill’s Beach Dogs won the coveted Chef’s Choice Award with the dish of Wagyu Beef Loaded Frito Pie. The People’s Choice Award went to The Red Bar with their array of dishes including, smoked tuna dip, smoked salmon + shrimp and crawfish + crab pasta.
“We were excited to bring back Taste of the Race for the 2022 race weekend, and as usual our amazing local chefs representing 15 local restaurants knocked it out of the park,” said Tom Glavine, host of the Taste of the Race event, Seaside School Board Member, proud Seaside School parent, Major League Baseball Hall of Famer, and former Atlanta Braves’ pitcher.
“Our local culinary community, led by the talented and generous Corchis family, provided a night full of delicious food to over 700 guests. The continued support of our local restaurant community and sponsors is instrumental to the Seaside School and its culinary program. We are fortunate to have this type of support, year in and year out!”
The 2022 finish line after-party in Seaside featured live music by The Scott Rockwood Band, complimentary beer by Grayton Beer Company, and post-race food catered by Great Southern Cafe’s Chicken Shack. This fun atmosphere pulled in thousands of family members and friends of runners to celebrate their achievements.
“Events like the Seaside School race are incredibly important to our community,” says Matt Algarin, director of communications for the Walton County Tourism Department. “This event not only shines a spotlight on Seaside and its charm, but the direct support to our community from attendees provides a welcomed boost to restaurants, boutiques, and our accommodation partners during a slower time of year.”
670 volunteers worked tirelessly to ensure a successful race weekend. Official race results of all finishing participants are available on the Seaside School Half Marathon & 5K website.