The United Way of Union County has raised more than 4K with a 5K.

The United Way of Union County has raised more than 4K with a 5K.

On the morning of Sept. 13, the United Way of Union County held the second annual Game Day 5K Run & Walk fundraiser at Glacier Ridge Metro Park in Jerome Village. The event cleared more than $4,000, said United Way spokesman Dave Bezusko.

"We have successfully combined the elements of a first-class 5K run and walk with a football tailgate party," Bezusko said.

The event featured Steve Biro, a Woody Hayes impersonator, who mingled with participants and offered an inspirational pep talk before the race.

People were asked to dress in their Buckeye gear and prizes were given to those who showed the most "team spirit," Bezusko said.

ThisWeek was the media sponsor for the event, donating tickets to Saturday's Buckeye football game against Troy University for a raffle.

Der Dutchmen provided a post-race breakfast for all the participants, Bezusko said.

More than 200 people braved the early morning stormy skies, which cleared shortly before the event; 180 completed the 3.1-mile course.

"That makes it the largest 5K ever held in Union County," he said.

Highland Real Estate vice president Steve Reed said the event was a "great way for folks in Union County to get behind the United Way and support all their worthy endeavors."

Highland Real Estate is developing Jerome Village, a 1,350-acre mixed-use community being built across the street from Glacier Ridge Metro Park.

"If the Buckeyes would have won, it would have been perfect," Reed said, referring to Ohio State's 35-3 loss to USC.

All proceeds went directly to the United Way of Union County, an organization that helps support various organizations including the American Red Cross, Memorial Meals, all four local food pantries and more, Bezusko said.

Bezusko said last year's Game Day 5K was held during the first Saturday in October, when the Buckeyes faced Purdue University.

calexis@thisweeknews.com