rb classic 5k 2019Community Event Raises Support to Benefit the YMCA & Red Bank Rec

PHOTO: Runners take off on the 3.1 mile run through Red Bank at the Red Bank Classic on June 15. Photo Credit: John Vitollo.

RED BANK, NJ – Under a sunny sky, more than 1,500 runners and walkers young and old competed in the second annual Red Bank Classic on June 15 in downtown Red Bank to benefit youth programs at the Red Bank Family YMCA and Department of Parks and Recreation.

“We are thrilled with the turnout and proud to bring together runners and walkers of all ages and abilities for a fun and healthy day in beautiful Red Bank,” said Angela Courtney, one of the founders of the charity race, which debuted last June.

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rb classic 5k 2019 vipsPHOTO: Getting ready to kick off the 5K are (L to R): Red Bank Councilman Erik Yngstrom; Mayor Pasquale Menna; former Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno; and race committee members James Scavone, Angela Courtney and Teicia Gaupp. Photo Credit: John Vitollo

The event was organized by the Red Bank Business Alliance and Red Bank RiverCenter to showcase the community’s thriving health and wellness environment and wide variety of businesses, while generating charitable support for children and teens to access programs at the Red Bank Family YMCA and Department of Parks & Recreation, said Courtney, a member of the Alliance and owner of Sweetest Sin Boutique.

More than 80 businesses, 15 sponsors and 60 volunteers pitched in to support the event, which included a fun run for children and a family-friendly fitness festival in Marine Park featuring activities and refreshments from 33 vendors. The event culminated with a post-party at nearby Red Rock Tap+Grill.

rb classic 5k 2019 kids runPHOTO:Children dash down Broad Street in the children’s run at the Red Bank Classic. Photo Credit: John Vitollo

Mayor Pasquale “Pat” Menna welcomed runners and walkers to Red Bank and gave the countdown to start the race. The U.S. Marine Corps Forces Reserve Combat Logistics Battalion, 4th Marine Logistics Group from Red Bank, served as color guard, and Frances Forte, 15, of Rumson, sang the national anthem.

First over the finish line was Dave Favortino, a 31-year-old from Galloway Township, who ran the 3.1mile course in 16 minutes, 17 seconds; followed by Paul Jacobson, 16, of Staten Island in 17 minutes; and Red Bank’s own Meza Soriano, 35, in 17 minutes and 21 seconds.

Surprise first female finisher was 8-year-old Ava Johnson, a third grader from Haddonfield, who posted a time of 18 minutes and 38 seconds. Coming in second for the women was Kiera Russo, 38, of Tinton Falls with a time of 18 minutes and 50 seconds, and in third place was Katie Desiere, of Ocean Township, 31, who finished in 19 minutes and 18 seconds.  

Eighty teams competed in the 5K. In first place was the Shore Area Running Club; second place went to Red Bank Eye; and in third place was Orange Theory Fitness.

rb classic 5k 2019 734776PHOTO: The spirited “Run for Tania” Team cheered on one of the race’s organizers, Tania Lisitski, who is recovering from cancer. Photo Credit: John Vitollo

“It was a well-paced, very well-organized race,” said top finisher Favortino, who described the course that winded through Red Bank as “challenging,” especially the climb up Tower Hill.

In addition to the perfect weather, James Scavone, executive director of RiverCenter, attributed the event’s success to the collaborative efforts of the business community, volunteers and the borough.

“We’d like to thank everyone who supported the event,” Scavone said, noting that in just one year, the road race has grown to be one of the largest 5K races in Monmouth County.

Gold sponsors of the 5K were: Two River Community Bank, Chill Rx Cryotherapy and Red Rock Tap+Grill

Complete live race results, provided by Split Second Racing are available at:



About the Red Bank Classic 5K

The Red Bank Classic 5K is a collaborative effort between the Red Bank Business Alliance and Red Bank RiverCenter. The race debuted June 2018 in downtown Red Bank, fueled by a group of passionate business owners and community volunteers. In one year, the race grew from 1,000 runners to over 1,500 in 2019, making it one of the largest 5K races in Monmouth County. The community event is supported by scores of local businesses and volunteers. Proceeds from the race benefit youth programs at the Red Bank Family YMCA and the Red Bank Department of Parks and Recreation. For more information, visit www.redbankclassic.com or e-mail [email protected].
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About the Red Bank Business Alliance

The Red Bank Business Alliance (RBBA) is an alliance of Red Bank business owners founded with the purpose of enhancing the vibrancy of Red Bank as a destination for shopping, dining and entertainment. The RBBA is an active and instrumental partner in the Community whose objective is to enrich the “Red Bank Experience.” We team with the Red Bank RiverCenter, the Red Bank Borough Council, and residents to make Red Bank everyone’s “First Choice” to work, shop, dine, play and reside.


About Red Bank RiverCenter
Red Bank RiverCenter is a 501c3 non-for-profit organization established in 1991 by an alliance of local businesses, property owners, residents, and other stakeholders to enhance and promote Red Bank’s downtown district as a mid-Atlantic destination for dining, shopping, and culture. Red Bank RiverCenter helms the city’s Special Improvement District to support the Red Bank business community by recruiting new businesses to town and helping them navigate the various start-up procedures, marketing and promoting the Red Bank business district and implementing capital improvement projects and beautification programs throughout the town. For more information, please visit: http://www.redbank.org.

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Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...