CAMBRIA COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ)– Ever wanted to partake in a marathon but don’t feel like doing all that running? Well at PotatoFest in Ebensburg this year, you can.

The first ever Couch Potato 0.0k will be coming to PotatoFest this year on Sept. 24.

At 1:05 p.m. the zero-mile “race” will take place on the trailhead at the Ghost Town Trail, which was awarded as PA’s Trail of the Year for 2020. Participants will get the chance to enjoy downtown Ebensburg’s PotatoFest which will have music, food and lots of vendors.

The sponsor, Lloyd Street Brewing, will hand out a craft beer or soda to participants who will also receive a 0.0 “race” car sticker.

The Cambria County Conservation & Recreation Authority (CCCRA) and the Cambria County Regional Firefighters Association are hosting this event ahead of the 2nd Annual Chernisky Ghost Town Trail-a-Thon that will take place the following weekend.

“We are focusing on the best part of any race, the post-race festivities, it’s going to be one of our most fun events yet”, Program Coordinator for CCCRA Caytlin Lusk said.  “No excuses, no limitations, anyone can do it.”

Those wanting to sign up ahead of the event can do so by going online and then typing in “Couch Potato 0.0k,” and they will also get an event t-shirt. Registration can be done the day of the event as well at 12:30 p.m.

2nd Annual Chernisky Ghost Town Trail-a-thon

The following weekend is the 2nd annual Chernisky Ghost Town Trail-a-thon which offers two other events that are more about experiencing the Ghost Town Trail. There will be a foot race on Oct. 1 and then a casual group bike ride on Oct. 2.

This is the fourth and final foot race in the Cambria County Trail Series that was formed in 2016 by CCCRA to try and promote health and well-being among the three rail trails in the county. At the same time, they raise money for the Friends of the Trails Program, which exists to enhance, beautify and maintain the trails.

The other races in the series are the Path of the Flood Historic Races, the Ghost Town Trail Challenge, along with the upcoming Jim Mayer Riverswalk Family Fun Run taking place Sept. 3.

All proceeds from the Chernisky Ghost Town Trail-a-Thon will go to the Cambria County Conservation & Recreation Authority’s Friends of the Trails Program and the Cambria County Regional Firefighters Association’s fire training facility.

Foot race

The foot race will consist of three different events, a marathon, a 15-mile run and a 5k. Brand new this year for the foot race is a disabilities division, Athletes With Disabilities (AWD), in which participants visually or physically impaired can participate and receive awards. Youth entries are free for the event.

Runners will meet at Duman Lake County Park on Saturday, Oct. 1 in the morning, where marathoners and 15-milers will be sent to Ebensburg or Nanty-Glo, to begin their race. Both distances will run to Vintondale, where they will turn onto the C & I Extension, then soon take a left to enjoy the recently constructed trail that connects the C & I Extension to Duman Lake County Park.

For the 5k, it will begin and end at Duman Lake County Park, in an out-and-back fashion along the newly added trail.

The races will be times by Falcon Race Timing and 1st, 2nd and 3rd place awards will be handed out in three categories Youth, Adult, and Athletes With Disabilities. Everyone who finishes will get a medal, and all pre-registered participants for the foot race and bicycle ride will receive a long sleeve event shirt.

Bicycle ride

This will be an out-and-back casual bike ride led by Tom Chernisky, that will go from Ebensburg to Vintondale.

“This is a way to create activity, community, and working together for a common cause,” Chernisky said. The trails and firefighters touch avenues of so many lives, the trails and economic impact and the men and women that are training to save lives. It’s a win-win for everyone.”

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In 1994 the CCCRA was created to promote trail development for recreational purposes and also to provide technical assistance to county municipalities for environmental remediation projects. Its mission is to acquire, construct, maintain, operate, and facilitate recreation opportunities and environmental remediation facilities in Cambria County and the surrounding region.