The Watchman

The Watchman

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Month of Gratitude - November 3

Today I want to express my gratitude for this man:

Described on Wikipedia as a notorious train robber, bank robber and leader of the Wild Bunch Gang, Robert LeRoy Parker, better known as Butch Cassidy, has become the impetus for some of my family's best memories.

Each year on the first weekend in November, the Town of Springdale hosts the Butch Cassidy 10K/5K Run.  The race goes through the towns of Springdale and Rockville ending in the ghost town of Grafton.  This early settlement of Mormon pioneers was abandoned after being flooded out one too many times.  Today the Grafton Heritage Partnership is working to restore the remaining buildings.

This year's amazing logo by Sandy Bell

The Butch Cassidy 10K has been held as a fun run for 27 years.  Money raised from the event has gone to help support many programs in the community such as community trails, the Zion Canyon Seniors, the Youth at Zion Canyon, solar projects, community playground, the Visitors' Bureau and of course the restoration of Grafton itself.

Last year, my friend Anita and I braved horrible weather and participated in the 5K walk.

Here we are crossing the finish line.  Notice the mud.  That's because over the course of the race it rained and SNOWED.

Me in the flurries of snow
This year the weather was perfect, not too hot and not too cold.  The runners seemed to enjoy themselves and so did the spectators.  One participant told me they were so impressed with how well organized the event was and how friendly everyone involved was.  Yep, the Town has a great staff and amazing volunteers.

All I have to say is it is Butch Cassidy Weekend and my children know that their weekend is booked.  For the last 10 years, Rick has been hauling one or more children to Grafton to help with the race set-up, clean-up and everything in between.  Even this year, even though Rick had not asked Jon specifically if he was going to "volunteer", Jon had planned that he was and adjusted his social schedule so he could get to bed early Friday night.  (This means that he postponed his date to see Wreck it Ralph till Saturday night.)

The girls and I used to stay home snuggled in our beds watching cartoons as the men would leave bright and early to be in Springdale by 7 AM.  The last couple of years, the girls have been old enough to help pass out water at the aid stations as the runners come by.  Now as a family, we have laughed at the cold, the snow, the heat and enjoyed days like today that were wonderful.  It is fun to go and cheer on our friends.  Rick is glad that the girls are so willing to step up and help as their brothers grow older and move out.

After the last racer has loaded the shuttle for the ride back to Town, we have a tradition of going to lunch together as a family somewhere in Springdale.  Here we are this year at Oscar's Cafe.

With our friend, Brandon Gowans (who took first in his age division this year)
I understand the Murder Burger is to die for, but I enjoy the fish tacos myself.

You may think you have never seen or heard of Grafton, but if you are familiar with the movie Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, this famous scene was filmed there:

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