Cassadaga Kids Triathlon returns this year
Youth is served
CASSADAGA — After a year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Wilson Endurance Sports is bringing the kids triathlon back to Cassadaga.
The Cassadaga Kids Triathlon, which was held in 2018 and 2019 will return to Cassadaga Lake on August 14 and is scheduled to be the only event of its kind that Wilson Endurance Sports holds this year.
“We’ve done several in the past around all of New York State,” said Tonia Wilson. “But we cancelled them last year because of COVID-19. This is the only kid’s race this year.”
The event is open for kids ages four to 13, who will participate in a 100-meter swim, a three-mile bike ride, and a one-mile run, which begins at 10 a.m. on August 14 on the Cassadaga Beach. The event is held in two waves, with the older kids going first, before the younger kids get to take their turn.
“It’s so much fun,” Wilson said. “The roped area in the beach is much smaller than it’s been in the past so I’m not sure if we’re going to start at the normal beach or next to it, but there will be buoys in the water. The kids will swim around the water, and the kids can wear floaties, life vests, or whatever makes them comfortable. They can also be accompanied by adults.”
Following the swim, the kids will go out on the bike path that goes around the lake, then will come back in and run a half mile from the park down Dale Drive, then run back. The 9-13 year olds will enter first, followed by the kids in the younger age range. Once the event is over, there will be a pancake breakfast done by Mark Wilson, sponsored by the REDHouse.
Wilson Endurance Sports held its first kid’s event of any kind in 2017 and have since held them all around New York State, including in Cassadaga. According to Wilson, the turnout for the upcoming event compared to 2019 has doubled as 50 participants are already signed up, which could be due to a multitude of reasons.
“I really think that once somebody’s friend does it, word spreads and they think they can do it too,” Wilson said. “This is something that starts out slow and grows by word of mouth. I also think with the pandemic, kids were home so much of the time and parents were trying to get them to do things outside. More kids have been riding their bikes. It’s such a cool thing for them to do with the activities they’ve had access to.”
Wilson also said that the kids get value out of doing things like this, as unlike a team sport, they participate in these kinds of events for their own benefit. Additionally, the Wilsons pull no punches, and give the kids the full experience with all the bells and whistles those adult competitors would experience.
“It’s not a team sport that they would get at school,” Wilson said. “It’s something completely for individuals and they can do it on their own. And the events don’t differ, we do everything the same. They get the full finish line, banners, and all the cones. They do everything the adults do.”
Participants in the event will receive a finisher medal, an assorted goodie bag, and a tee shirt because of all the sponsors the Wilsons received. The Wilsons are also holding training courses, the first of which would have been last Saturday, but there will be one on Saturday, July 24 at 10 a.m. and Sunday, Aug. 8 at 10 a.m.
The Cassadaga Kids Triathlon will be on Aug. 14 at 10 a.m. at Cassadaga Beach. Registration is $25 for kids ages 4-13. The Wilsons want to thank their sponsors for the event, which includes Southern Tier Security, Tom’s Pro Bike, Doctor Hoy’s, SBR Sports, Mike Frame Images & Computer Consulting, Harvest View Greenhouses, The REDhouse, Kravitz Tree Service, Farrell Roofing, Universal Audiology, Greener Gardens, Tender Care Child Care, LLC, Burger King, McDonalds, Valu Home Centers – Fredonia, and Wells Ice Cream.