Maury Regional Health Care Foundation recognizes 5K winners


COLUMBIA, Tenn. — A total of 564 runners and walkers participated in the 2023 Mule Kick 5K & 1-Mile Trot, presented by First Farmers Bank, at Riverwalk Park on Saturday, April 1, raising a record $34,784 for the Maury Regional Health Care Foundation thanks to contributions from racers and local sponsors.

Proceeds from the Mule Kick 5K & 1-Mile Trot help to support Maury Regional Health’s mobile medical unit, which serves at-risk and uninsured patients throughout the region and has touched the lives of thousands of individuals since 2017. Proceeds also support the Foundation’s Wellness and Aquatics Center Healthy Living Endowment, the city of Columbia Parks and Recreation Department and the physical education program at Santa Fe Unit School, the area school with the most race participants.

“Thank you to presenting sponsor First Farmers Bank and all of our sponsors, runners, walkers and volunteers,” Foundation Executive Director Joe Kilgore said. “It was a little windy, but the warm sunshine made it a great day to race. The funds raised from this event will support the healthy living needs of our community’s at-risk and underserved populations through services like the Maury Regional Mobile Medical Unit.”

Justin Watson had the fastest run of the day in the 5K, finishing first overall in 17:32.95, while Ninette Chapman was first overall for the women with a time of 20:28.05. In the master category, David Hudson was first for the men in 18:18.58, and Alison Wierenga finished in 20:30.67 to lead the women. Paul Vondohlen and Connie Lovett Neal went home winners in the super grand master category, finishing respectively in 30:12.56 and 46:38.52.

The top three female finishers in the 1-Mile Trot included Harlow Hoeldtke, Audrey Turner and Ryan Laffey, while the top three male finishers were Whit Seago, Owen Slaughter and David Tuck.

A full overview of all the winners from the male and female age group categories is available at, where all 5K racers can also view their individual times and download their finisher certificates. Photos from the 2023 event will soon be available at

First Farmers Bank served as the presenting sponsor for the 2023 Mule Kick 5K & 1-Mile Trot. Champion sponsors included Maury Regional Physical Therapy, Farm Bureau Health Plans of Tennessee, Pinewood Springs and Impressions Winning Moves. The finish line sponsor was C & B Linen, with Muletown Rec serving as the hydration sponsor. Sprinter Sponsors included Brown & Maguire CPAs, PLLC, Tenn Pin Alley, Columbia Power & Water Systems and Maury Regional Medical Group. Trainer sponsors were TriGreen Equipment of Columbia, Stan McNabb Chevrolet Cadillac of Columbia, Maury County Visitors Bureau, Mid-Tennessee Bone & Joint Clinic, Advance Financial Foundation and Listerhill Credit Union. Patron sponsors included Middle Tennessee Juvenile Detention Center, McDonald’s of Maury County, Duck River Electric, Smelter Service Corporation and Southern Radiology Associates, while warm-up sponsors included Southern Exposure, United Community Bank, McEwen Group Real Estate, Opus Pathology, Davis Heating & Cooling, Ascend Federal Credit Union, Encompass Health, Melissa Pyron RE/MAX Encore, CopyCats Print Services, LLC, Jones and Lang Sporting Goods, Beck Dental Care of Columbia, Bobby and Connie Harris, and Columbia Pediatric Clinic.

To learn more about the Maury Regional Health Care Foundation or to make a gift to the mobile medical unit, visit For information about sponsoring the 2024 Mule Kick 5K & 1-Mile Trot, email or call 931.380.4075.

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