It's time to gear up for one of the Rim country's most-anticipated spring athletic events.
It's the Payson Area Habitat for Humanity Home Run 5K walk and run that annually draws large crowds eager for a healthy dose of morning exercise, a post-race pancake breakfast and small-town camaraderie.
Another big draw of the event is that participation benefits PAHH and its mission to build affordable housing for deserving families.
This year's event, to begin at 8 a.m. May 7, will be conducted on a 3.1-mile winding, loop course different than in past years when it was held at Green Valley Park.
The new course begins in Rumsey Park travels west on Payson Parkway, north on McLane Road, along Longhorn Road and back to Payson Parkway before finishing near the original start line.
According to Parks and Recreation Director Bill Schwind, among the reasons event organizers opted to switch the course from Green Valley Park is because Rumsey has more tables and ramadas that can be used for the pancake breakfast after the race.
In the event, walkers and runners will compete in one of nine age groups, including 70-plus in which 80-year-old Ray Kinsman and 73-year-old Tom Cooka are expected to participate.
The top three male and female winners pocket cash awards of $100, $50 and $25.
The entry fee is $15 if received before April 29. After the deadline it is $20. The fees included a complimentary T-shirt and breakfast. Guest breakfast tickets are available on the day of the race for $3 for adults and $1 for children.
Entry forms are available at the Payson Athletic Club at 400 E. Highway 260 or at PAHH at 1013 S. Goodfellow Road.
For more information, call (928) 474-0330.