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Registration is now underway for the Vail Recreation District's middle school cross country program for youth runners in grades fifth through eighth. In its third year, students are invited to participate in the program to learn about running preparation, technique, and provide a fun social team environment while preparing for high school cross country.

The program will take place from 4:15 to 5:30 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from Aug. 15 through Sept. 23 at Homestake Peak School. There will also be three meets, Sept. 3 at the Husky Invitational in Beaver Creek, Sept. 17 at Gypsum Creek Golf Course hosted by Eagle Valley High School and Sept. 23 at the VRD Invite in EagleVail.

Students will learn from local high-level coaching staff including Josiah Middaugh, 2015 XTERRA world champion, former Division I cross country and track and field athlete at Central Michigan University and current coach of a variety of endurance athletes via Middaugh Coaching, and Jared Biniecki, current track and field coach for Homestake Peak School and former Division I cross country and track and field athlete at Central Michigan University. 
 
According to Biniecki, who also manages Dobson Ice Arena for the VRD, the goal is to teach kids how to run in a fun and competitive environment to help prepare them for high school cross country success. "Last year's program was very well attended with over 60 participants," said Biniecki. "We're excited to bring back the cross country program for middle school students and hope our runners not only learn running skills, but have an enjoyable experience that introduces them to a lifelong sport."
 
Cost is $65 per runner and participants will receive a racing singlet to keep and wear at meets. Practices will be outside and all runners should bring clothing appropriate to the weather conditions. Proper running shoes are recommended.
 
To register, click here or contact Biniecki at 970-479-2271 or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..