The 2nd Annual Robert Cipriano Cross-Country Meet will begin at 8:30 a.m. Saturday with a one-mile race for Dearborn Public Schools staff members.
An hour later, event organizers say hundreds of fourth through eighth grade students will hit the course in a series of one and two mile races.
The district said the yearly event honors Robert Cipriano, former Director of Business Services for the Dearborn Public Schools who also oversaw athletics in the district. His life ended in April 2012 when officials said two young men broke into his home and attacked his family.
The Cipriano meet will take place at Ford Field Park in Dearborn, located at the corner of Brady Street and Cherry Hill Street. Parking is available on the lower level of the field near the baseball diamonds just west of Brady Street.
The district said it has teamed up once again with the Dearborn Education Foundation, the Dearborn Track Club and the City of Dearborn to coordinate the event.
Last year, nearly 850 students took part and organizers said this year's numbers look to be about the same. A brief awards ceremony will follow each race with the top ten finishers receiving a medal.
Dearborn Public Schools students have spent the first weeks of school getting in shape and qualifying to run in the big event. Elementary qualifying time is 10 minutes for 1 mile (both boys and girls) and middle school qualifying time is 20 minutes for 2 miles (both boys and girls).
Teams from each elementary and middle school will compete in ten different races arranged by age group and gender. Organizers said all runners will receive a ribbon for taking part, medals will be awarded to the top ten runners in each age group, a plaque will be awarded to each grade/gender winner, and a trophy will be presented to the top elementary and middle school team.
"We're looking forward to another great event that honors a great man who made running a big part of his life," commented Dearborn Public Schools Superintendent, Mr. Brian Whiston.
Parents and community members are encouraged to attend the event and cheer on the students. The staff race begins at 8:30 a.m. and the final race between 8th grade students should wrap up around 1 p.m.