Despite the rainy weather, some 250 runners of all ages and abilities turned out for the fifth annual Southwest Café Margarita 5K on Saturday night.
The race, formerly known as the Sunset 5K, raises money for the Sunrise Cottage group home in Ridgefield. First Selectman Rudy Marconi was on hand to send the racers off.
The rain did not dampen any of the runner’s spirits nor did it hinder their times.
Geoff Nelson of New Fairfield crossed the finish line first in a time of 15:28 for the 3.1 mile course. The former Syracuse University runner had a 1:13 lead over second- and third-place finishers David Stuakiewcz, 15, of Weston and Zach Schwartz, 22, of Newtown.
Sixteen-year-old Ariana Bottalico of Brewster, N.Y., was the first female to finish in a time of 19:43. Bottalico finished 11th overall and had more than a one-minute lead on her nearest female competitors, Meredith Ott, 17, of Darien and Teren Block, 45, of Ridgefield.
Whether participants ran at an elite level or walked the course, the annual run is a way for organizer Barbara Nevins and the Southwest Café way to give back to the community.