Ahoy Matey – The Pirates Are Coming!
Amelia Island’s own “Run Like a Pirate Day” is coming soon. It’s the annual Pirates on the Run 5K/10K, and it’s one of the most colorful running and walking events arrrrrrrrround!
Start and finish the 5K/10K courses START AND FINISH at St. Peter’s Church, Atlantic Ave. at 9th Street. Members of the Fernandina Pirates Club in full costume will be handing out Mardi Gras beads!
Be aware that this is not a closed course and there will be traffic, except inside the Greenway. (The 10K route will cross a road with traffic, out-and-back.)
Walkers are welcome and encouraged to enter the 5K. Please walk on sidewalks whenever possible.
The Ned Tyson Memorial Pirates on the Run 5K/10K is presented annually by the Amelia Island Runners club. It is walked and run in memory of Ned Tyson, who came up with the idea for the event.
“The first race was run in 2004, and it was scheduled in February because it was a quiet time on the island and we hoped to grow it into a regional event, when families might spend a night or two and visit the downtown area,” said Fernandina Beach City Manager Joe Gerrity. Tyson, Gerrity and Steve Nicklas organized the inaugural 10K run, with “help from many volunteers,” Gerrity said.
“The next year Ned wanted us to have a Super Bowl-sanctioned event” in conjunction with the Super Bowl being held in Jacksonville, Gerrity said. “The process was very difficult, since each event had to get approval from the Super Bowl committee,” which was an involved process. “We finally did get approval and the Super Bowl emblem appeared on the t shirt that year.”
“As the race grew, it really became too much for us to handle since we all worked full time, so we asked Amelia Island Runners if they would be interested in sponsoring the run. I guess the rest is known history!,” Gerrity said. The event has grown into a 5K/10K with hundreds of runners and walkers.
Ned Tyson died in 2010, and the race was subsequently named in his honor.