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Strolling Along 

Spokane's mayor takes turns behind the gun, behind the pack

click to enlarge art17892.jpg

In his previous life, Spokane Mayor David Condon ran with the cadence of a military man. But now Condon is a different type of leader, an office general. And since taking the reins of City Hall in January, he hasn’t had much training time.

“In the Army, we used to run two miles, and my best time on two miles [was] 11:56,” Condon says. “That will not be my pace anymore.”

But the mayor won’t be on the trophy hunt this year. Condon, who has run Bloomsday multiple times, is pulling double-duty. First, he’ll be waving starter flags to get some of the early racers going. After that, he’ll fall in line with his family and help bring up the rear.

“I’m going to end up doing it the strollerstyle,” he says.

Condon and wife, Kristin, will push their daughter Hattie, 2, and their son Creighton, 3. Since the stroller convoy is in the back of the pack, Condon should have time to administer his flag-waving responsibilities. It also means the mayor is off the hook for any kind of superhuman performance.

“I won’t have to worry about making [an] exact time,” he says. But he does worry about hitting Doomsday Hill, a heart-pounder of elevation that occurs about 4.5 miles into the race.

Condon has been getting ready, though. He ran last week’s Susan G. Komen for the Cure run, and he has recently managed to fit in some practice jogs.

He likes Bloomsday because it’s specific to Spokane. And because, like Hoopfest, it’s about “being active.”

“It’s a great way for the community to get together,” he says.

The mayor’s advice for first-time runners?

Wear good shoes, stay diligent, and make sure you have energy.

Oh, and watch out for Doomsday Hill.

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