Last year, Pond Road Middle School student Jared Miller had a novel idea.

Instead of running to fight the crowds in shopping malls on Black Friday, he thought, wouldn’t people feel better if they ran outside, for pleasure, instead?

Such was the genesis of the Black Friday Fun Run/Walk, which returns for a second year Nov. 29. The non-competitive run starts at 10 a.m. and is 1.25 miles (or two laps around the lake in Town Center). A walk portion begins at 10:20 a.m., and is 0.62 miles (one lap around the lake).

Registration is $15, and comes with race entry, a T-shirt and a ticket for door prizes. The proceeds go to support Special Olympics New Jersey.

“Special Olympics New Jersey immediately popped into my mind because of how dedicated the Special Olympics athletes are to their sports, and the fact that they enjoy participating in sports, just like me,” Miller said.

Miller is an eighth grade student at Pond Road Middle School, and member of the school’s cross-country and track teams. He started brainstorming ideas for community service projects last year, and decided a run to benefit the Special Olympics would be perfect.

He entered last year’s event wanting to raise $750. Instead, he raised $3,000. More than 130 people participated in the first Black Friday Fun Run/Walk. This year’s goal is to match or better that.

For a registration form or for more information, email There also will be a registration period from 9-9:45 a.m. at the gazebo on Lake Drive in Town Center on the morning of the event.

–Rob Anthes

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Rob Anthes
Rob Anthes is managing editor at Community News Service, and also serves as the editor of the Hamilton Post. Rob's writing has been honored by the New Jersey Society of Professional Journalists, the Keystone Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and the Association of Free Community Papers, most recently in 2020. He was a 2019 fellow at the Metcalf Institute for Marine and Environmental Reporting, based at the University of Rhode Island. A Hamilton native, Rob is a graduate of Steinert High School and Syracuse University.