5K in Springdale brings dads and kids together

Allen Wallace photos.

Father’s Day weekend opened with some exercise for many dads and kids, as they took part in the second annual Daddy & Me 5k in Springdale.

The event started when an idea struck former Springdale Police Chief Kevin Cornett. Cornett, now serving as police chief in Isle of Palms, returned to his old beat for Saturday’s race and other festivities, hosted by the department along with Serve and Connect.

“It’s really a call to action to our community, to say that dads matter,” Cornett said. “As law enforcement officers we constantly deal with individuals who are coming from homes without fathers. It hit me that if we did something to show them how important that father figure role is, that if these gentlemen, these kids, had a dad, that maybe I would not be dealing with them in the capacity that I was.”

Proceeds from the event, which also included music, a cookout and a splash pad, will go to benefit the Midlands Fatherhood Coalition. The inaugural event in 2018 raised more than $12,000 for the organization. Saturday’s totals were not yet available, but organizers hoped to top the previous total.

“The work they do to help dads connect with their families or get reconnected is huge,” Cornett said of the Coalition.

Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin also attended Saturday’s event, and promised to participate as a runner in 2020, joking that he would not wear a suit next time.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to show that we are stronger when we’re together,” Benjamin said. “When we work together in the spirit of making our families stronger, it’s amazing what we can do together.”

Categories: Arts & Entertainment, Lexington County, West Columbia