Cape Gazette

Headlamps and knuckle lights: sundown runners race into darkness

The Day After 5K sundown run attracts 100 runners
By Dave Frederick | Dec 23, 2012
Photo by: Dave Frederick Holly Zakrociemski looks a lot like Christmas racing and rocking around the pine trees and trails of Cape Henlopen State Park.

The Day After 5K (solstice and end of world) sponsored by the Seashore Striders set off from the Biden Center at 5 p.m., Dec. 22 as 106 runners wearing headlamps and knuckle lights were chased into the heart of darkness by chilly gale-force winds.

Ronald Shalks, 53, of New Hampshire took the point early like a Canadian honker and was first to the finish in a time of 19:07, an amazing time to run over unfamiliar trail terrain where you can’t see your own feet.

An oddity, three young runners named Dylan were in the top 10 including Dylan Varrato,18,19:48; Dylan Chan, 16, 22.34; and Dylan Stanley, 16, 22:36.

Ali Coning, former Cape start now a freshman at Towson, was the first female in 22:07.

There were lots of family combinations embedded in the race, proving a genetic link to zany endeavors.

A complete list of results can be found at


Ronald Shalks, 53, of New Hampshire led post to paddock in a fast time of 19:07. (Photo by: Dave Frederick )
Tony Varrato,  2097 and Eric Medrano, 2062 run from the darkness into the blackness. (Photo by: Dave Frederick )
Jim Chaney, 2025, rocking canary-in-a-coal-mine action wear, and Jeffery David, 2032 head out for the sundown run. (Photo by: Dave Frederick )
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