Duathlon to honor cyclist, volunteer

September 28, 2018

BARBOURSVILLE — When Bill Hill died in January, it was a shock to everyone who knew him. The cancer diagnosis came in December, with little time for anyone to really thank him for his contributions to the community.

But Bill Rosenberger, the director of development at Harmony House, was adamant that Hill’s legacy live on, leading to Saturday’s inaugural Bill Hill Memorial Duathlon at Barboursville Park. The 5K and 8-mile bike ride kicks off at 8 a.m. and benefits Harmony House.

“Bill Hill loved cycling, loved running and loved to help people who were experiencing homelessness,” Rosenberger said. “This event combines those loves and honors a man who did so much for us and others.”

In 2012 and 2013, he organized cycling trips to Washington, D.C., and raised tens of thousands of dollars for the Homeless Veterans Outreach Center. When he retired from State Farm and started working at the VA Regional Office, his sights were set on helping Harmony House, which is just across the street.

“Bill wasn’t much for accolades, but I think he’d appreciate this event,” Rosenberger said, adding that Hill’s family, who gave their blessing for the event, will be on hand to hand out medals to winners.

The event starts at Lake William, with on-site registration from 6:45 to 7:45 a.m. Participants in the duathlon will start the race at 8 a.m. Those only running the 5K will start at 8:15 a.m.

The 5K includes a portion of the lake course, then the trail along the river to the soccer fields, where runners will jump back on the road and come back to finish at the lake. Those riding bikes will transition at Lake William and head out of the park’s main entrance to Martha Road, past Martha Elementary School to 4-H Camp Road, which they’ll follow until they re-enter the park near the soccer fields and head back to the lake to finish.

Rosenberger said there will be plenty of volunteers at the park and along the road course to ensure runner and cyclist safety.

The Barboursville Police Department also is helping at the park entrances.

Gold-level sponsor Orange-theory Fitness is also providing two hydration stations for competitors and will hand out race bags after participants finish.

Entry fees are $25 for the 5K and $40 for the duathlon, which can be done as an individual or with a teammate. Participants can register on site or at www.billhillduathlon.com.

Following the race, Harmony House will host a celebration picnic at noon at the main pavilion at Lake William, where community members can enjoy food, games and music and also meet staff members who work on the front lines every day to help people enter recovery, find employment and housing, and access services.

For more information, visit www.billhillduathlon.com or call Rosenberger at 304-908-9097.

Update hourly