JOEL KNAPP MEMORIAL ARNOLD ARBORETUM 5K RACE always lived his life to the fullest. If Joel wanted to do it, he figured out how to learn it and he did it. From tree climbing, skiing, rock climbing, dirt bikes, mountain biking, motorcycles, fishing, hunting, skydiving and much much more. Joel didn't think about it or talk about how he was going to do something he just did it. He ran the Philadelphia Marathon with barely a thought toward training and still ran well.


Joel was always the son, brother, cousin, uncle or friend that would gladly help you. His very presence brought a uniqueness to any situation that could always be counted on for a laugh. As family we would often think of some humorous event involving Joel and say to each other "That’s Joel"Unfortunately, over the past few years Joel struggled to enjoy life the way he always had and after a long fight, tragically lost his battle with depression.


Joel Knapp (August 5, 1975 – April 8, 2007)






Race Story:  Twenty-two hearty runners and countless volunteers braved the 38 degree temperatures and threatening rain to run the First Annual Joel Knapp Memorial Arnold Arboretum 5k Race.  This course is a mix of dirt, rock, pavement, grass.  First mile is flat, second up and down, and the last more up than down.  Course has a net 200ft ascent with three feature hills. Joshua Gordon took advantage of some tapering marathoners to eek out a victory in the men’s division and Renee Knapp represented the women’s category well with a top 10 overall finish.  Plenty of talent in effect with Aaron Price surging late to take second, Jared Markowitz coasting to third, Joe Robinson showing XC who’s boss with fourth, and Ben Schersten making a statement at number five. 

Special thanks to our volunteers who did lots of labor and made this possible. Also, much appreciation to the Arnold Arboretum for allowing us to host the first race ever on their beautiful grounds.  Everyone’s generosity allowed us to raise over $300 for the Arboretum and $300 for American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP).

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