Loop in 5 Days!

Leatherman’s Loop News, Volume 31, Issue 2: 5 Days 2 Go!

If you are close by the Rez you can pick up your bib (and shirt if ordered) the day before the Loop.

We will be at the WPA Gallery at the entrance to the Reservation from 10am-12noon on Saturday, April 22, 2017. If you can come and pick up your bib that would make Loop day a bit less hectic for you — and for our race day volunteers in the showmobile.

For Loop Sunday April 23rd, plan to arrive early…  The Loop start time is 9am. Plan to be at the park before 8:15am to get parked and get your bibs (and t-shirts if ordered). Even earlier is better — and an early arrival will let you get a look around and get some warm up time. Plus you don’t want to get stuck in the unpredictable park entrance bottleneck! 

If you missed the earlier detailed instructions and logistics email, click here to read it.

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Leatherman’s Loop aerial photo of start area. Click for larger image.

Here’s a link to some handy maps and directions that should help you get on your way to the Loop.

If you want to make sure you are registered check here: Searchable list of registered runners.

Remember – there is no same day registration.

Bib pickup will begin at 7AM on the day of the Loop at the showmobile.

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Dogs are welcome at the Park but — just like any other time you visit a county park — you must obey the Park’s leash law.  There will be many other dogs around.

If you plan to run with your dog you must wait until the after main group has started. Runners with dogs will be started after the main group. You MUST keep your dog leashed and close when running!

If you are planning to “Help Feed The Leatherman” please bring your food pantry donation to the Loop on April 23rd.  Your generous donation will go to the Community Center of Northern Westchester and will directly benefit families in need.

A reminder from the Pound Ridge Reservation park management: On Sunday PLEASE respect the park speed limit of 15 MPH while driving on the park roads. Take special care driving the roadway into the park and in the parking meadow as there will be many people and pets walking around.

There will be staff and volunteers directing the parking and guiding cars to park efficiently. Please follow their directions. It is going to be tight parking and we’d like to pack ‘em in!

The forecast currently calls for an overcast day with increasing chance of rain on Sunday… Water levels are medium-high height with significant rain forecast in the days between now and the Loop. The mud flats are already soaked and ready to pull your shoes off. Wear your brightest and cleanest socks! Send us before and after photos (of your socks or other items of clothing or body parts). Everything is looking good to go. 

Have a safe trip — CAR POOL if you can!

Any questions please contact us.

See you on the trails…

-Tony, Judy, Rob, Mike, Bill and the rest of the Leatherman Harrier volunteers

Less Than 2 Weeks To Go!

Leatherman’s Loop News, Volume 31, Issue 1

31st Leatherman’s Loop in less than 2 Weeks!

To: Everyone who is registered for the 2017 Leatherman’s Loop:

Winter had a last minute hurrah at the end of March, but we’re pretty sure it’s safe to say spring has arrived! We hope you are ready — because the 31st running of the Leatherman’s Loop Trail Race is just around the corner on April 23rd!

Race organizers Tony & Judy Godino, Rob Cummings, Mike Paletta, and the dedicated Leatherman’s Loop volunteers have been working hard to set up this year’s event. We are only missing YOU!

For those who like to get organized ahead of time, we will have early bib & shirt pickup at the entrance to Ward Pound Ridge Reservation on Saturday April 22nd from 10am-12pm. We will be in the WPA Gallery across from the park entrance booth. Come on over and pick up your bib the day before if you can — it will be one less thing for you to do on race day!

Here are some tips that will help you on race morning Sunday, April 23rd:

Traffic backing up at the entrance near race time - arrive early to avoid the crush.

Traffic backing up at the entrance near race time – arrive early to avoid the crush.

1.) ARRIVE EARLY! Please plan to arrive at the park before 8:15am — or even earlier if you can swing it. The regular $10 parking fee is already incorporated as part of the loop entry fee so entry goes more quickly. Bonus: When you arrive early you will avoid the traffic backup at the entrance to the park. Traffic always backs up at the park entrance as race time approaches so please plan an early arrival. You will thank yourself when you are relaxed and ready to go at the start line. If you do find yourself stuck in traffic please be patient.

2.) DRIVE SLOWLY and CAREFULLY in the Park! Watch the volunteers who are directing the parking. Car pool if you can & PARK TIGHT! For a helpful overview of the race location (parking, start, bib pickup), check the logistics page of the website here.

3.) BRING A FULL CHANGE OF CLOTHING! You will get wet and you will get muddy. Where and how you change after the race is up to you. Towels are a must. A clean, dry set of shoes is a requirement. There has never been a runner who emerged dry and clean from the woods after completing a Loop. Plan accordingly!

Race director Tony Godino gives out last minute instructions to runners before the start.

4.) LISTEN ATTENTIVELY TO PRE-LOOP ANNOUNCEMENTS! We need a few minutes of your time before the start. Race Director Tony Godino will have important information about the course and safety. You will be instructed about the hazards related to the stream crossings and current water and course conditions. Rocks and slippery ledges lurk under the surface of the water. Slow down and DON’T DIVE into the water under any circumstances.

5.) LISTEN FOR THE START! Following the instructions, Danny Martin will give a brief poem/blessing to set the tone. Then we will start the runners.

6.) IF YOU SEE MUD, RUN THROUGH IT! There’s no avoiding the mud — so simply embrace it, get dirty, and get going. After the first mile, nobody’s shoes will be clean or dry.

7.) STAY ON COURSE IF YOU CAN’T CONTINUE! There will be a number of “race sweeps” running the course following the slower runners. If for any reason you can’t continue, wait for them to get to you to assess your needs. The park is over 4,300 acres so don’t leave the course unless you know exactly where you are going.

8.) RUNNERS WITH DOGS MUST WAIT AND START AFTER THE MAIN GROUP! We will make this announcement at the start as well. If your dog is running with you in the Loop you MUST GO TO THE BACK OR SIDE OF THE START LINE with your dog and watch the main start! We realize this puts runners with dogs at a timing disadvantage, but the dogs & leashes at the start were becoming a safety hazard. This is a compromise in lieu of banning dogs altogether from the race. We don’t want to see dogs out of the race altogether so PLEASE respect this request. 

If you plan to take a dog as a spectator, the county park law requires ALL dogs in parks be leashed at ALL times. This is for the safety of your dogs, other park patrons, and other dogs visiting.

9.) PLEASE LEAVE YOUR HEADPHONES IN THE CAR! This is a recent requirement. We ask for your safety and for other runners sake. If you can’t hear other runners — especially during the big start — it can cause problems for you and others on the trail.

10.) THERE IS NO SAME DAY REGISTRATION! We simply do not have room for any more registrations. Please understand the position we are put in when we have to refuse someone entry. If someone you know is interested in next year’s loop, there is a form at the website to submit name and email address. If you are signed up for this year’s Loop you are already on this email list.

11.) BRING FOOD DONATIONS! Don’t forget donations for the Help Feed the Leatherman Food Drive. Bring your non-perishable donations to the Loop and we will have a drop off point near the registration trailer. Your generosity will benefit the Community Center of Northern Westchester. Thanks to the Ceisler Family for continuing this 9th year of the food drive. We will send more information about this community effort in a separate email.

12.) RESULTS: Printed lists of finishers with time and place will be available soon after the finish at the bib pickup area and by later in the afternoon on the Loop website. Check it out at http://www.leathermansloop.org/results.

Bib pickup table.

Bib pickup table.

13.) THANK A VOLUNTEER! A tremendous amount of volunteer effort goes into making the Loop a special event each year. T-shirt designers, registration volunteers, pie buyers, course setters, trail wardens, box lifters, water servers, food preparers, coffee brewers, parking coordinators, photographers, videographers, course sweeps, and the clean-up crew—not to mention the Pound Ridge, Lewisboro, and Westchester County Police officers and the fantastic and dedicated members of the Lewisboro Volunteer Ambulance Corps!

This event is truly a group effort and tribute to the spirit of the community. We are grateful that we have such a wonderful group of Loop enthusiasts and are thankful that we have the thousands of acres of parkland at the Rez to enjoy!

Remember, leave only (muddy) footprints, take only pictures…

Expect more news as the event nears…. See you in less than 2 weeks!

Good luck and have fun,

Tony, Judy, Rob, Mike, and the rest of the Leatherman Harriers


PS: Some useful links…

• Follow the Loop on Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/leathermansloop

• Map and Directions to the Reservation
• A runners overview of the Leatherman’s Loop trail
• Searchable list of registered runners
Run on the trails on Sundays all year round!

• Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The Loop is the first in a series of trail races called The Trail Mix. Check these upcoming Trail Mix races (and some other favorite races of ours):

(Note: this went out as an email to all registered runners for the 2017 Loop. If you did not receive it via email and you are registered, you may want to check your spam folder and set up leathermansloop@gmail.com on your address book/white list.)

Note: There is no same day registration for the 2017 Leatherman’s Loop. All entries were done via Loop Lottery in mid-January.

Help Feed The Leatherman – 9th Annual Food Drive

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Bring your food donations to the Loop on April 23rd!

Loop runners have been incredibly generous in the past years with donations of food items to members of the local community in need.

The volunteer food drive “Help Feed The Leatherman” has collected over 6,500 pounds of food donations for the Community Center of Northern Westchester food pantry over the past 8 years.

David Ceisler of Katonah continues to spearhead the organization and dropoff with the help of his daughter Rosie. The donation minivan will be set up near the showmobile on the morning of the Loop. Please remember to bring some food donations! List of needed items is below.

David Ceisler accepting a food donation item from a runner in 2016.

David Ceisler accepting a food donation item from a runner in 2016.

Why a food drive? The Old Leatherman came to the same places on such a regular schedule that people “could set their clocks by his arrival.” In each community he passed, the Leatherman had identified a home or two where he knew friendly people would provide food whenever he appeared. Some residents would set plates of food out for him when he was expected, and the Leatherman would come by and clean the plate. We are asking our runners to “put the plate of food out” for the Leatherman.

People come the center every day in need of help. The Center’s mission is to improve the well-being of our neighbors. That is what many people years ago did for the Leatherman.

The Center is in need of:

  • Canned fruit and vegetables
  • Dried and canned beans 
  • Hot and cold cereal 
  • Tuna and canned meat 
  • Cans of soup, beef stew and chili 
  • Pasta, rice and spaghetti sauce
  • Peanut butter and jelly
  • Fruit juice 
  • Baby food and diapers 
  • Dry or shelf-stable milk

This is not a requirement. Please help if you can. Thanks to David for conceiving this idea and thanks to Rosie and David (Sam is off at college) for gathering and getting the donations to the Community Center after the Loop.

To help you remember the donations: Put the cans or other items in your running shoes or your bag the night before (or on the drivers seat of your car!). We will remind you with a note closer to the race as well.

The Leatherman depended on the charity and kindness of strangers and neighbors. Let us extend the wonderful goodness and spirit of our loop, as we gather food for our neighbors.  THANK YOU RUNNERS for your generosity!

Note: the 2017 Loop filled up in the January Loop Lottery. Registration is closed – we can’t take any more registrations. Sorry!

Articles and Archives That Help Runners Get To Know or Remember The Loop

Many words have been written about the Loop. Hundreds of Thousands of photos have been taken of the Loop (if you are skeptical, check here!) Hundreds of hours of video has been shot at the Loop including a full length documentary in 2011. We have audio recordings, aerial footage, posters, leather projects, quilts, 3D course dioramas, posters, signs, sculptures, and even weathervanes!

If you have written and posted an article or a video that we can link to please send us a link. If you have a personal collection of photos, or you wrote a poem related to the Loop, or a song, or a rap, or any creation! Anything you are willing to share — Please let us know and we will link to it from here.

Oldest Loop runner John Young with his daughter-in-law Kelli and his graddaughter Haley. (photo by Carol Gordon)

Oldest Loop runner John Young with his daughter-in-law Kelli and his graddaughter Haley. Three generations ran in 2015! (photo by Carol Gordon)

To get you started, here are a few articles we’ve found or folks have directed us to online:

(to see some offline / print articles, check here for Record Review and Lewisboro Ledger articles)

Let us know your new or old links and we will update this page.

Leatherman’s Loop Founders Newsletter, Volume 8

Mixed bag of Loop stuff from Tony

Greetings and Happy New Year to the Leatherman’s Loop family. With the lottery closed for the 31st Loop it seems like a good time for me to share some history as well as other stuff related to the event. As always, my hope is that some of you will find this sharing of interest.

What didn’t happen at the start last year

The banner above was supposed to fly over the field just before the start of the race last year (mock-up shown here). Incredibly, the pilot could not find the Pound Ridge Reservation but was spotted and photographed by friends of the Loop who live near the park. What can I say?

What did happen at the start last year

Joe Stanley being introduced at the 30th Loop in 2016Joe Stanley, the only runner who has completed all thirty Loops, agreed to serve as the “celebrity starter.” Joe won the Loop in 1987 and followed up with many top ten finishes. His times have slowed but his kind and peaceful spirit has soared. As I see it, Joe embodies the spirit of the Loop and will always be at the head of the conga line of tens of thousands of runners who have participated over the years.

Let’s put the fire tower back up in the Rez

From 1926 until 1982 a fire tower sat on the highest point in the Pound Ridge Reservation. Over the years it became a destination for hikers who would climb its six stories to the observation deck. The reward was a panoramic view which included long Island Sound and the N.Y.C. skyline as well as the white faced cliffs of the “Gunks” and the Catskills beyond. Long time friend of the Loop Tom Cohn has tirelessly led the effort to secure permission to put a similar tower back where the original once was. I applaud and support Tom’s vision. Click on the link and take in the view.

The wisdom and compassion of Danny Martin

Danny Martin post-Loop with Jere Hochman in 2011In the last newsletter I said that I now see the loop as “a celebratory gathering in nature which includes trail running.” Danny Martin adds that “our experience of the Loop has shown us many times that when we gather and connect across our many differences we generate hope and strength. In times of change and the challenges they bring we need such hope and strength.” We both believe that participation in the Loop has the potential to serve each of us in ways apart from and beyond the running. Danny thinks that it can be harnessed and put to use. Click on the link to his blog and read about Danny’s vision for “connecting vigils.”

Links to video and photo highlights 


The 2017 Loop video trailer features some highlights from Loop videos made in 2002, 2004, 2005, 2011, and 2015 (2). Thanks to Dean Leggiero, John Cummings, Mitch Stein, Wilderness BobChristy Cuomo, Tom Anckner, and a few others for taking the videos. The short 3 minute video features Griffin “Buck” Farro, Danny Martin, Madison Haller, the Albertus Magnus girls track team, Kate Paletta, Hernando Munoz, Joe Stanley, Tom Nohilly, Kerry Arsenault, Stan “Leatherman” Telega, Bob GoldblattTony Godino, and many of the runners of the Loop in those years.

Thank you Rob Cummings for editing and producing the project.

A gallery of some classic Loop photos to get you thinking about the upcoming Loop.

Trail Mix Race Series and Sunday Runs

Trail Mix Series MedallionNot everyone who participates in the Leatherman’s Loop is a serious runner. For some of you it is the only race that you do each year and that is fine. Congratulations to the 94 runners who did complete four or more of the Trail Mix Series races in 2016. By doing so you are guaranteed a lottery selection for the upcoming Loop. Check out the Trail Mix Series and the Leatherman Harriers Sunday Runs websites.

Last year Nick Ohnell and David Vogel produced and hung a very large tapestry which thanked me for doing something that I love — but it is Judy and Rob and our team of volunteers that skillfully lace each piece of the Loop together. It is you the participants who bring the magic and the love into the Rez each year and for that I thank you.

                                           Tony

2017 Loop Lottery Selection Finished

We have finished with the Loop Lottery 2017 selections.

Sign up for the 2017 Loop here if you have been selected in the Loop Lottery:

https://runsignup.com/Race/NY/CrossRiver/LeathermansLoop

T_shirt_finish_line2-lgEmails have been sent to all runners with their selection status. Please contact us if you have any problems or concerns and we will get back to you promptly.

If you did not receive an email from us, but you signed up in the Loop Lottery, please check your spam folder since it may be in there. You can also check the searchable list of selected runners here to see if your name — or friends & family names are listed.

Sign up here. You must be on the selected runners list to finalize your entry. If you did not enter the Loop Lottery, you won’t be on the list.

Please sign up with our email list and you will get notification of the Loop Lottery in the future — as well as get notes about the upcoming Trail Mix races below.

Two additional items you may be interested in…

1.) The 2017 Trail Mix Series – Six local trail races — starting off with the Leatherman’s Loop — combined to form a fun and challenging trail series with prizes for overall winners and age group winners. Everyone who completes the series (at least 4 of 6 races) gets a special recognition item at the end of the series, plus GUARANTEED SELECTION in the 2018 Loop Lottery.

2.) Check out sundayruns.org if you are interested in running with a group on trails on Sunday mornings. It is great training for the Loop and we even run the Loop course a few times prior to the big day. See details at Sunday Runs site.

We are looking forward to seeing you on the trails!

2017 Loop Lottery Registration Closed

trail-closed-signThe Leatherman’s Loop Lottery 2017 has CLOSED.

We are not taking any more lottery entrants. 

We will hold the drawing this Friday, January 20th, 2017. Notifications will go out that day as early as possible.

  • If you are selected, you MUST COMPLETE YOUR REGISTRATION (link will be live after drawing) with payment for entry to the event.
  • Selected runners will have from notification time on Friday, January 20th through the end of the day Tuesday, January 24th to sign up and pay.
  • If you do not complete your registration by Tuesday, January 24th, 2017 at 11:59pm, we will assume you are not interested in running and will release your spot to the next runner on the waiting list starting January 25th at midnight.
  • You can check whether you are registered in the Loop Lottery at this link.
  • We wish everyone luck for the drawing!

If you have any questions, please let us know via our contact form.

Loop Lottery 2017 Open!

Loop Lottery 2017 Open!

Loop Lottery Registration

Registration for Loop Lottery is open from January 13, 2017 at 12:00am until January 16, 2017 at 11:59pm.

Check your loop lottery registration (or others in your group) here.

For questions, see the Lottery FAQ here or Contact Us.

If you have any problem or issue, please contact us BEFORE the Loop Lottery closes!

Leatherman’s Loop Lottery to Open January 13th at 12:00am

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Trail Runners:

Please mark your calendars with these two dates: January 13th and April 23rd!

The 31st Running of the Leatherman’s Loop will be on Sunday, April 23, 2017 at Ward Pound Ridge Reservation in Cross River, NY.

The Leatherman’s Loop Lottery will open at 12:00am Friday, January 13th, 2017 and close Monday, January 16, 2017 at midnight — 4 full days total.

The only way to get into the Loop is to go through the lottery. We promise that (based on lottery history) most of you will get in as long as you sign up during the four day window.

We will post reminders to our Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Google+ pages just before the Loop Lottery opening in January. Follow us there for lottery opening messages.

We sent out an email reminder on December 22nd. If you want to be on our email list, enter your email address here.

We encourage you to sign up for the Loop Lottery as early as possible after it opens so you don’t forget. Once it is closed we won’t accept any new lottery entrants.

To sign up, visit the Leatherman’s Loop website during the lottery registration period (1/13/2017-1/16/2017) and there will be links to the registration site.

Runners can sign up for the Loop Lottery at no charge.

IMPORTANT:

  1. After the Loop Lottery entry closes on Monday, January 16th we will have the drawing for winners on or just after Friday, January 20th
  2. Those selected winners will then need to complete their registration by paying for their Loop entries.
  3. Deadline for completing signup (if you are selected in the lottery) is January 24th.
  4. Any runners who do not complete their registration by then will give up their spots to the next runner in the waiting list.

Runners can enter the lottery as part of a group. Each person from the group must register (or have someone register them) in the lottery. Runners can add their group name during lottery registration.

We have put together a list of frequently asked questions about the Loop Lottery. It addresses questions about group lottery entry, duplicate registrations, t-shirt purchasing, and other questions you might have.

If you are one of the 94 runners who completed the 2016 Trail Mix Trail Series you are eligible for automatic selection in the Loop Lottery – Congratulations! We will offer the same benefit next year for runners completing the 2017 Trail Mix!

t-shirt-start-gun1_thumbLottery winners and losers will be notified via email. If you do not hear from us via email on January 20th or just afterwards, please contact us right away at leathermansloop@gmail.com so we can follow up. You can also check the Loop website for a list of runners selected in the Loop Lottery (updated after selections are made and runners finalize their entries).

We are interested in making the lottery as simple and hassle-free as possible. We appreciate any feedback or thoughts you have and can share with us. If you have any questions not covered above or in the Loop FAQ or the Loop Lottery FAQ, please get in touch via our contact form, or via our email address leathermansloop@gmail.com.

Thanks! See you on the trails…

-Tony, Judy, Rob, and the Leatherman Harriers


PS: If you are interested in training on the trails with a group of enthusiastic trail runners of all abilities, check out our club site at sundayruns.org and come out one Sunday morning and join in a group run. We run the trails all year round and always welcome new runners!

PPS: There will be an announcement about the 2017 Trail Mix Trail Series in January.

Loop Gets Ready for 31st Year!

leatherman-harriers-club-drawing-2015-transparent-alt-colors-leatherman-only-work-CROP-500sqWe are making plans for 31st Leatherman’s Loop. It is coming up sooner than you think: Sunday, April 23, 2017 – which is a mere 151 days from the day this was posted (11/22/16)!

The Loop Lottery will be held in January 2017. That’s about 7 weeks from now. Sign up for email reminders about the Loop Lottery and other local trail race items sent by the Leatherman Harriers.

Congratulations to runners who completed the Trail Mix Trail Series for 2016 – these 94 runners are eligible for automatic selection in the Loop Lottery when they sign up (click here for final Women’s standings and Men’s standings in the series).

Follow us in a few different ways if you want to know about 2017 Loop Lottery and future race plans. We have found that Email is becoming a bit unreliable, so we recommend following us at least one additional way, your choice: Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Tumblr, or our site’s RSS feed!

In case you didn’t know yet, we have a dedicated group of trail runners called the Leatherman Harriers Sunday Run group. Every Sunday at 8am we meet at a local park or preserve (and the occasional race!) and run the trails. Come join us… All are welcome and we have all different pace groups. No one gets left behind.

See you on the trails!