News | Nov. 1, 2017

Annual Halloween event attracts enthusiasts from all ‘walks of life’

By Dianne Ryder DLA Public Affairs

Chills and thrills were in the air as nearly 200 participants ran, walked and even wheeled their way along the path during the McNamara Headquarters Complex annual Halloween 5K event Oct. 31. This year’s theme was “Zombies,” but costumes were as varied as the participants themselves.

Alex Cano, a contract specialist with Defense Logistics Agency Energy was the top male finisher, with a time of 22 minutes. Julia Houston, a budget analyst with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, was the top female finisher, with a time of 27:10. First-place walkers were Marcus Young from DTRA at 42:35 and Louise Hansen from DLA at 45:7. 

Cano, who’s placed first in several HQC races, said he appreciates any opportunity to run, as it’s one of his favorite activities. 

“It doesn’t get old for me – [it’s a way to] keep fit, get fresh air and clear my mind,” he said. “I liked the dressing up that people did to help make it festive. It was a lot of fun.”

He said he also appreciated the availability of clear signs marking the path and volunteers directing participants where to go.

Houston said that as a working mother she doesn’t often get personal time to exercise. She appreciates the hour HQC agencies allow employees to dedicate to fitness and often uses the time to run with fellow female coworkers.

“It turned into ‘girl time’ and it’s just fun – talking to other people – it’s like hang-out time for me,” she said. 

Houston has been running regularly for about three years and has participated in several marathons. She said she thoroughly enjoyed the event. 

“It was a really nice turnout,” she said. “It was a little hillier than I would have liked it to be, but it was definitely a blast and a lot of folks from my agency were there, so I thought it was a good morale-booster for us.”

After the race, participants were treated to water and fruit in the HQC cafeteria. The first 100 people to register for the event received t-shirts and all were eligible to register for $50.00 and $25.00 gift card drawings from the event’s sponsors. 

Prizes were also awarded for the three best costumes:  
  • First place: Lydia Morales (Zombie), from DTRA
  • Second place: Andre Whisonant (Ninja), from the Defense Technical Information Center
  • Third place: Lisa Vanderperre-Hirsch (Harley Quinn), from DTRA