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Encinitas council opposes California 10/20 run

Runners hit the road for the inaugural California 10/20 run last February, which went through Del Mar, Solana Beach and Encinitas. The Encinitas City Council reversed course and approved the run Aug. 20 due to the course being altered.
Runners hit the road for the inaugural California 10/20 run last February, which went through Del Mar, Solana Beach and Encinitas. The Encinitas City Council reversed course and approved the run Aug. 20 due to the course being altered.
( / Jon Clark)

As it stands, the California 10/20 run won’t dash through Encinitas next February.

The Encinitas Council voted 3-2 against the Cardiff leg of the event at the June 25 meeting. Race organizers, however, claim there was a misunderstanding over donations and plan to try for approval again soon.

The proposed 10-mile course would start at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, head north on Coast Highway 101, turn around at Chesterfield Drive in Cardiff and then follow the same path back.

Throughout the route, live bands on stages would bang out tunes to motivate runners.

Councilwoman Lisa Shaffer, who voted against the event, said the run would close Coast Highway 101 in Cardiff, disrupting businesses on “restaurant row.”

“I don’t see why we should be closing our streets for them if we’re not getting anything in return,” Shaffer said, referring to donations.

Leading up to the inaugural 10/20 run last February, race organizers gave $10,000 to the Cardiff 101 Mainstreet Association and funds to nonprofits outside the city. Encinitas hasn’t received a donation commitment for the upcoming run, city staff reported at the council meeting.

Mayor Kristin Gaspar said local donations would have helped make the case for the event. Nonetheless, she voted in favor of the run, stating the public benefit outweighs the negatives.

“I understand there is an impact with street closures — don’t get me wrong,” Gaspar said. “But I also know you do get a sense of the camaraderie — and people just getting out and doing something very healthy.”

When reached on June 27, race director Peter Douglass, who was not at the council meeting, said he was “really surprised” about the vote.

“We had a lot of council visits last year in the three cities we run through to get the event off the ground,” Douglass said. “The event went smoothly, and so I anticipated we’d have easier goings this year.”

Douglass said there’s a “misunderstanding” regarding donations. He noted the plan is to give to Cardiff 101 again, as well as the Magdalena Ecke Family YMCA, though the amounts have yet to be settled.

However, donations are dependent on the city signing off on the event, he noted.

A representative from the 10/20 run was present at the council meeting to answer questions about operational matters. But the person wasn’t familiar with planned donations for the event and so the record wasn’t corrected, Douglass said.

“We made some generous donations last year and plan on doing the same thing this year,” he said, adding: “We’re hoping this isn’t the final word.”

Douglass has since asked the council to reconsider the run at a meeting in the near future. He said Cardiff is a “pretty critical” part of the run and it would be unfortunate if the course had to be redesigned.

Councilman Tony Kranz opposed the run because it’s the morning of Feb. 15, 2015 — two weeks after the Cardiff Kook Run, which the council unanimously supported at the meeting.

“It would be nice if this race was a little more spread out,” Kranz said.

He went on to say “without any commitment” to the community, closing Coast Highway 101 so soon again is asking too much.

The run will go before the councils in Del Mar and Solana Beach in the upcoming months.

“We’ve started off on the wrong foot,” Douglass said, adding he’s hopeful “it can be turned around.”


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