Pfefferkorn and fellow ultra-marathoners Jerry Diehl, Don Lindley and Tom Landis had run trails at Chain O’ Lakes for about 10 years and wanted to share it with other runners and give back to the park and Albion community, Pfefferkorn said.
When the idea of bringing a 100-mile race to Indiana came up, all of them thought of Chain O’ Lakes, Pfefferkorn said. “We couldn’t think of another place we’d rather have it.”
It takes a special kind of person to run almost four times a 26.2-mile marathon in a 30-hour period, or even the 50-mile race in 15 hours, Pfefferkorn said. Some want to challenge themselves, to prove something to themselves.
You learn something about yourself on such a long race, Pfefferkorn said. “You go through some real highs and lows.” When you accomplish something like this, you know you can face other challenges, he said, adding, “There is a carryover.”
Ultra-marathoners have a motto that sums it up, Pfefferkorn said: “We don’t have to; we get to.”
Funds from the race are used to support the state park, Pfefferkorn said. Last year’s race resulted in the donation of a Kubota rough terrain vehicle for doing work with various projects around the park
A donation to the park for this year’ race already is in place, Pfefferkorn said. It’s an all-terrain wheelchair from Innovations in Motion in Angola, which can be used so people with physical disabilities can go around Sand Lake.
Pfefferkorn sees the race growing year by year, and hopes it continues to benefit both the park and the Albion community.
He said he’s humbled by the support of the Super Town of Albion Revitalization Team and the event’s various other sponsors.