Get Ready to Run!!! High Schools Can Compete

Last year Loyola runners did well individually in the Will Rogers Race. Now they’ll have a chance to win trophy for the school.

Will Rogers 5/10K Race Registration Is Open


New this year at the 42nd Annual Will Rogers 5/10K Run is a high school challenge. The top-three runners’ times from a high school will be tabulated, just like at a cross-country meet.

The high school competition and a trophy will be dedicated in honor of Dick Lemen, a coach at Palisades High School for many years. He was also a member of the Ridge Runners, a band of about 20 local runners who originated the Fourth of July Will Rogers Race in 1978.

In a 1990s feature article by Matt Purdue (“They’re Running the Show”), Dick explained why the group organized the 5/10K races. “It’s a good opportunity for us to put something back into running. Also, it’s good for the community and we enjoy doing it.”

Lemen died in 2017 and is survived by his wife, Karen, and two adult children, Carly and Jeff.

The winning school will receive the Dick Lemen Memorial Trophy. Runners, boys and girls alike, from PaliHi, Loyola, Santa Monica, Malibu, Brentwood, Crossroads, University, Venice, St. Monica, Wildwood, etc., are all invited to register and run. When registering, runners need to list the high school, he/she attends. Visit:

Palisades High School runners posed after running the Will Rogers race.


Also new is a running group to help get residents in shape for the Fourth of July Race. Deirdre Del Negro will meet with runners at the north lawn of the Palisades Recreation Center on Tuesdays at 8:30 a.m. Each session will last about an hour.

If a resident has never run a 5K before and needs motivation, this group will help. Deirdre has turned her passion into motivating friends, family and newbies to get off their couches and onto streets and treadmills.

Having run four marathons, Del Negro’s goal is to help others see that adding a little movement to their day is the best way to stay sane and healthy.

Preregistration for this training is not necessary. Show up at the park in running shoes and be prepared to move.


The Will Rogers 5/10K Fourth of July Race registration is open. Sign up before June 15 and the cost is $45. Between June 16 and 29, race registration is $60. The Kids Fun Run is $25. Signing up early allows you to pick up the race packet on July 2 and 3 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the lawn area outside the Draycott Restaurant in Palisades Village.

The cost for late registration (June 30 through July 4) is $70. Kids Fun Run is $30. Everyone should have a number at the starting line, because registration fees defer the costs of the race. Any extra proceeds go to the Race Foundation, which donates to various youth charities and activities through the Palisades Optimist Club.




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