tdlDespite several inches of slushy snow that fell overnight, the Vinton fire station was full of runners for the annual Tour De Lites. The fund-raiser for the VS track and cross country teams attracts runners from all over eastern Iowa. Participants from as far away as Lawler, Marshalltown and Ackley were among the medalists.

VS coaches helped sign in the runners for the 12th annual event. Students from the Vinton Popcorn Company (whose advisor is track coach Aric Chvala) offered free caramel corn made at the school.

Former cross country runner Ben Olson and other members of Benton County Cattlemen’s Association made and served free beef stew — a tradition that started at the 10th annual Tour De Lites two years ago.

“It’s a good promotion for us,” said Olson, adding that serving stew has become a tradition for the Iowa Cattlemen, who have created a tradition of offering stew at the Living History Farms Cross Country Race.

The winner of the men’s trophy was 13-year-0ld Lukas Lamparek of Cedar Rapids. Another teen, Katelyn Gloeckner, 17, of Springville, earned the women’s trophy.

The event, which included 136 runners, raised about $1,200 for each the VS track teams and cross country teams.

See complete results HERE

See more photos HERE