Three of Canada’s most acclaimed middle-distance runners will come together for a different sort of meet this Saturday, as they share stories and insights at the Celebrating Decades of Running event at the University of Toronto. Bruce Kidd, Harvey Mitro and Jerry Bouma will draw from a combined three decades of high-level competition for a conversation on the triumphs and challenges they experienced over their running careers.
The athlete-authors will treat attendees to readings from their published reflections on running: Kidd from his 2021 memoir A Runner’s JourneyBouma from his 2021 book Touching Greatness, Forever Together—The Villanova Track Story: 1966-1981and Mitro from 2022’s Taking Life in Stride. Attendees will also have a chance to mix and mingle following the readings.
Kidd has been called Canada’s greatest-ever long-distance track runner. Besides setting 15 Canadian records and winning 18 national senior championships in Canada, the US and Britain, he remains the only Canadian ever to win gold in the Commonwealth Games 5,000m or 10,000m. He retired shortly after the 1964 Olympics.
A runner for more than 45 years, Mitro was a standout middle-distance competitor, winning provincial and national medals, breaking 4:00 for the mile, and representing Canada on the global stage.
Bouma, the first Canadian to attain a full track scholarship to Pennsylvania’s Villanova University, set the Canadian junior national record in the mile in 4:09.2 at age 17. He also established various provincial and Canadian records for 800m, 1,500m and 3,000m. He also chaired Edmonton’s Pan-American Junior Championship in 2015 and the Canadian Athletics Olympic Trials committee in 2016.
Saturday’s event, hosted by the University of Toronto track and field program, will be hosted by 2020 Olympian and former national record holder Kate Van Buskirk. It takes place at the Bruce Kidd Fieldhouse, 55 Harbord St., on the third floor of the U of T’s Athletic Centre.
Doors open at 1 pm Readings begin at 1:30 pm with the reception following from 3 to 4:30 pm Admission is $10.
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