Jingle Bell Jam draws colorful crowd

NEW ULM – The New Ulm Jingle Bell Jam 5K run-walk has turned into a great tradition for people who want to burn off the turkey and yams from Thanksgiving.

On Saturday, 262 runners and walkers trotted the 5 kilometer course, many of them decked out in holiday costume that has also become part of the tradition.

Santa hats are de rigeur for the run, but many runners sported elaborate costumes, from fuzzy footy pajamas, to Frosty the Snowman, to Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus, to Ralphie and his “pink nightmare” bunny costume from “A Christmas Story. Elves and reindeer also made appearances.

Costumes are so prevalent that the organizers hold a costume contest before the race is run.

One of the costume winners could also have won the long-distance award, if there was one. Rhonda Taylor flew in from Fort Worth, Texas to visit her friend Terri VonMaluski in North Mankato, and both walked the course in a festive combination of red and green.

There were serious runners in the course, too. Daune Oftedahl was first to cross the line with a time of 18 minutes, 28 seconds.?He took first in the Male, age 30-39 division.

The top three finishers in each age group were:

Males

12 and under: Joshua Nelson, 21:43, Joseph Roiger, 24:53, and Aiden VonMaluski, 28:41.

13-19: Zachery Long, 22:13, Ryan Plath, 22:55, Isaac Nelson, 23:09

20-29: Ben Drexler, 19:20, Jordan Cholick, 19:35, and Jacob Saffert, 21:34

30-39: Duane Oftedahl, 18:28, Chris Gordon 19:57, and Shane Rasset, 21:17

40-49: Kyle Blongren 22:39, Loren Marti, 23:14, Chad Hubly, 23:43.

50-59: Willie Jans, 21:34, Keith Olson, 21:54, Brice Andree, 22:15

60-69: Peter Reinhart, 35:35

Females

12 & under: Maddie Hogue, 29:46; Victoria Marti, 31:40; Taylor Otis, 35:53

13-19: Sarah Preisinger, 23:44; Molly Hawkins, 24:07; Megan Hawkins, 26:14.

20-29: Ashley Hoscheit, 20:54; Olivia Augustin, 22:27; Kaia Jo Jans, 22:59;

30-39: Stacy Tauer, 23:53, Sara McMonagle, 25:15; Kelly Larson, 25:31.

40-49:Gwynne Gutzke, 23:07; Peggy Frederickson, 24:44; Lynn Moss, 24:51.

50-59: Marggi Thordson, 35:53, Dona Weets, 27:02;Diane Franta, 27:03

60-69: Lenora Zitzman, 31:15, Judy Dorn, 37:35

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