Bullfest: Runners drawn by food trucks, habitat


Photo by Caitlyn Pena via Herald-Sun

Downtown Durham was taken over by thousands of runners Sunday morning who ran in the annual Quintiles Bull City Race Fest.

Among the runners of the 5-mile portion of the race was 80-year-old Bob Lauterborn, of Chapel Hill.

Actively running since he was 50, Lauterborn said the beer provided afterwards is what fuels him, and he’s glad to know proceeds will benefit Habitat of Humanity of Durham.

“Habitat that was my late wife’s favorite charity,” he said. “ In fact I went to Honduras with Durham Habitat in January building houses.”

Since its inception in 1985, more than 380 local homes have been built with another 30 coming, said Heather Cook, annual fund and communications coordinator for Durham Habitat.

Sunday’s race will help cover one-third the cost of one of those homes, or for its foundation, framing and a room, Cook said.

“This is a great way for us to meet with a group of people that may not be totally familiar with Durham Habitat but are signed up for the race and helping out,” she said.

An estimated 5,500 runners, including 250 of QuintilesIMS’’ 2,500 Triangle area employees participated, said Steve Brechbiel, senior director of community relations for QuintilesIMS

“We look for opportunities to partner in the community where it helps out different organizations and where it gives our employees a chance to participate,” Brechbiel said. “It becomes a community gathering and community event. It’s much more than just a race.”

Wake County resident Tralene Williams said she’s participated in races in other cities, but the food truck rodeo was a draw for her to come to Durham.

“‘“I’ve never ran downtown Bull City, and it's just a different vibe for something different,” Williams said. “The runners, race host and activities are great.”

Raleigh residents Tim Walsh and Jamie Fava both ran the 5-mile portion of the race and said it’s a great way to stay fit.

“It’s more manageable, and running through downtown Durham makes it a little bit easier” Fava said.

Dressed as Elsa and Olaf from the movie “Frozen,” while running the race were Greensboro resident Alison O’Halloran and Carrboro resident Robin Armstrong.

“We’ve never run together before, but I’m training for a marathon and she’s training for a half, so we came to the 5-miler,” Armstrong said.

O’Halloran, who was vice president of Habitat for Humanity when she was in high school, said that it was a “great race for a great cause.”

“It was beautiful to run through Duke’s campus and kind of merge with the half-marathoners,” she said. “So I’ll definitely be doing it again.”

Brechbiel said runners can expect a fourth annual Bull City run next year.

Results of Sunday’s race will be posted at http://bullcityracefest.com/race-info/results-photos-2/.


Contact Rachael Riley: rriley@heraldsun.com, 919-419-6646​

Habitat Success Stories

Lal is a Burmese refugee who came to Durham after stops in India and Thailand. Lal partnered with Habitat and the Durham Literacy Center to renovate a historic home in East Durham. "There is no more fear," Lal said. "We won't have to move again because the home belongs to us."