The inaugural Robin Birrittella Memorial 5K race was a success as the village of Tarrytown commemorated the memory of one of the town’s beloved.
Folks from all over competed and dedicated their day in Birrittella's memory.
With two high-intensity races and a gathering at the Crest, the event raised plentiful donations for the LiveStrong foundation. Sponsors and additional family donations were set aside for a scholarship in Birrittella’s name. Event organizers are still collecting and expecting more donations to come.
“It was simply a special day for a special person,” summed up Lisa King, one of the chief organizers of the race.
“The level of support was tremendous. It was only fitting that so many people who were touched by Robin came out and dedicated the day to her. She was truly an icon in the Sleepy Hollow and Tarrytown area, a calming influence and major community presence loved and embraced by so many. It was a great day that we’ll all remember.”
The clouds parted and yielded to a sparkling sun, making a special occasion all the more memorable.
King was grateful for the opportunity and hopes the showing was a portent of things to come.
“It was really a wonderful inaugural event and we are hoping to make this an annual event,” she said.
“With all the tremendous support and contributions we received and all the people and alumni who came out, it’s definitely a sign that this could be a major event that grows year after year after year.”
The event unfolded with a “kids fun run” at 8:30 a.m.
In the main event, a 5K which brought out plenty of loud support and spirit, both male and female winners were members of the Sleepy Hollow varsity cross-country program.
Henry Hargitai won the men's 5K, clocking a time of 20 minutes, 34 seconds. Meanwhile, not to be outdone by their male counterparts, Katherine Doyle coasted to a first-place finish in the women's event. Doyle surged into the front of the group, with runners struggling to pick her off. Doyle ended up cruising to the victory, clocking a finish time of 23:22.
A loving mother of three, Birrittella's support and sheer kindheartedness helped shape the tight-knit Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow areas. Birrittella died of cancer on Aug. 14 of 2010.
She was an highly-reputable member business community, establishing her niche as a real estate broker. She was active in the field for 18 years, working at Prudential Rand Realty, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage and John P Streb & Son (in Willington, Conn.) prior to her career with Legends Realty.
Birrittella was was named “One of the Top 500 Most Powerful Women in Real Estate and Relocation” by RISmedia.
Birrittella's relentless support for Sleepy Hollow athletics was one of the many driving forces behind King and co-organizer Karen Doyle’s plan to launch the event.
“Robin was so involved in athletics and the community that a community sporting event made sense,” explained Karen Doyle.
"Robin and (her husband) Mitch were always walking together through the Crest. That’s why we decided to have the race start and finish there.”
For more information on The Robin Birrittella Memorial 5K Run/Walk please visit www.robinbmemorial.com.