Cool Stuff

/Cool Stuff

Race in Spooky Style for our Costume Contest at the James Island Connector Run

2017-01-23T22:28:33+00:00 October 8th, 2014|Cool Stuff, The Race|

James Island Connector runJoin us this year on November 1st for the James Island Connector Run and run in sp0o0o0oky style!

This year, we are hosting a Costume Contest at the race. We will be awarding the best Men’s and Women’s costumes 15 years old and younger as well at 15 years and older. Winners will be receiving fantastic prizes from Mellow Mushroom and Jeni’s Ice Cream.

We are expecting a huge turnout and we can’t wait to see everyone in their Halloween costumes. If you haven’t registered yet, head to and we’ll see ya there!

8 Lies Runners Like To Tell

2017-01-23T22:28:41+00:00 September 15th, 2014|Cool Stuff, Running Tips|

1. Saying “Running is a personal sport”  then finding yourself racing the person next to you on the treadmill the next day. Runners are competitive whether we admit it or not.

2. “This is too hard.” Sure, in the moment of an uphill run we curse ourselves, but once we climb the hurdle we become so proud of ourselves – it’s a great feeling!

Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 11.45.16 AM

3. “I’m too busy for a run today.” Nope, we don’t buy it! In a 24 hour day, find 30 minutes to an hour for a quick run. Running rejuvenates you and takes the stress of the day away.


4. “I don’t need new running shoes.” Let us tell you a secret, when you feel better about yourself, you run better. There’s no shame in getting those neon blue or hot pink running shoes if you feel great in them- running is all about confidence!



5. Breaking your toenails is a very real possibility. Yup, it sucks. Pounding the pavement is cause for a little wear and tear on your feet, but on the bright side, you now have a reason to get a pedicure.

6. You love your Garmin more than your iPhone. And you’ll run up and down your street just to get that last tenth of a mile clocked in. Admit it, we’ve all done this.

7. “I never get sore.” <— Big ole lie right here. It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or professional, running will make you ache, sore, tired – all of it. But the benefits outweigh so much more than the pain, so we stick with it!

8. Rest your body! This isn’t a lie, but a misconception about runners. You don’t need to run every single day to better yourself. In fact, it is imperative to give your body rest days to recover.

So who’s ready for the James Island Connector Run? Register HERE and round up your friends and running partners on November 1st!

Support Us On Saturday! Guest Blog by Alex Jackson

2017-01-23T22:28:43+00:00 October 28th, 2013|Cool Stuff, Gavalas Kolanko Foundation|

We are less than a week away, and it looks like this may be our biggest year ever!  But you know that Saturday is more than just a run, walk or bike ride, right?  I mean we love the views, the medals, the cash prizes… the beer at the finish.  But if you cross the James Island Connector on Saturday, you’re helping a much bigger cause.

Here’s guest blogger Alex Jackson to tell you his story:

The James Island Connector Run is the flagship fundraiser for the Gavalas-Kolanko

Alex Jackson, scholarship recipient and board member of the Gavalas-Kolanko Foundation

Alex Jackson, scholarship recipient and board member of the Gavalas-Kolanko Foundation 

Foundation. Fifteen years ago, co-founders Dr. Ron Kolanko and Nick Gavalas created an organization to serve a portion of the population that was underrepresented – students with physical disabilities with aspirations of earning a college degree.

For many students with disabilities, there are additional expenses required. For instance, I had to keep my wheelchair in tip-top shape as I navigated around the flooded streets and traveled the bumpy, brick sidewalks of the College of Charleston campus.

The Foundation helped me pursue my dreams as I earned my degree in Media Studies Communication. Now, I’m in my final year in the Master of Arts in Communication at the College. I’m also working in the Public Affairs Office for the Space and Naval Warfare Command (SPAWAR).

Your participation in the James Island Connector Run not only supports the Gavalas-Kolanko Foundation, but it helps students achieve their life-long dreams! 

Watch Alex in our PSA here.
You can also follow his blog Tuesday Talks With Alex.


You have until October 30th at 10pm to sign-up online for the race!   If you don’t make that deadline, you can sign-up in person at Cannon Park from 2-7pm Friday, or Saturday morning, starting at 6:30am before the race. 

The REAL Reason We Race

2017-01-23T22:28:44+00:00 October 12th, 2013|Cool Stuff, Gavalas Kolanko Foundation, The Race|

The registrations are pouring in, and we’re thrilled so many of you are running, walking and biking this year! Did you know that simply by crossing that bridge… you’re improving a life.  The proceeds from the race go to the Gavalas-Kolanko Foundation, a local charity that gives college scholarships to students with physical disabilities.  Runners like you helped out Chopper Johnson.  Read his story below (and have a tissue ready…)


 Edgar “Chopper” Johnson

In June, I had the honor of being invited to the National Federation of the Blind’s national conference in Orlando. I was able to spend the week with some incredibly gifted blind students and professionals. But the thing is that still resonates with me most came from a speech about introducing Braille into early childhood and elementary classrooms. The speaker asked, “Why do we force blind children to live and view themselves as defective sighted individuals, when in truth they are intelligent, capable, fully functional blind individuals?” As someone who was raised in a culture that viewed me as defective because of my vision, I’m still asking myself that question.

Yesterday, Rick Reilly, who has been a nationally syndicated sports columnist for decades with Sports Illustrated and ESPN, wrote a column about Cincinnati Reds beat writer Hal McCoy. To Reilly, what makes McCoy noteworthy is not that he is a Hall of Fame journalist, or that he’s been covering major league baseball for more than 40 years. It’s that he’s legally blind. As I was reading the column, bumped up to 200% on my laptop, I began to realize that Reilly was absolutely baffled that McCoy was able to do his job with a handicap. And to Reilly, that’s what it was: A handicap. Reilly was asking how can this defective individual continue to be successful in a sighted world.

The perception of being defective put a massive chip on my shoulder for most of my youth. If you ask my wife, she’d probably tell you it’s still there. That led to a catastrophic failure during my first attempt at college. When I reentered the College of Charleston three years, I got involved with the good, hard-working people in the Center for Disability Services, and they’ve been great. But the Gavalas-Kolanko Foundation was the first outside group that I encountered that said, “You’re not a defective sighted individual. You’re not a defective hearing individual. You’re not a defective ambulatory individual. You are an intelligent, capable, fully functioning human being who just happens to have it a little bit tougher than most of the rest of the students on this campus.”

The scholarship money has been wonderful. When I realized I had to buy books in three different formats. When I was seeing if our finances could support me doing a three-week study abroad to teach in Ecuador this summer. When I found out exactly how much just the eyedrops for cataract surgery cost, the GK scholarship money made it all a little easier.

But what has mattered most to me about being a part of GK is listening to Nick and Ron. Listening to the passion that they have about helping students with disabilities, and about not only expanding this program to include as many students as possible, but also about spreading the lesson that a disability is not a handicap.

For someone who was almost out of high school before the ADA was passed, it’s been a long trip from defective to confident with a disability. I’d like to thank Nick, Ron and the rest of the board of directors of the Gavalas-Kolanko Foundation for making that process a little bit easier.

 Help us help more students like Chopper.  Sign up today.

I Run…

2017-01-23T22:29:13+00:00 June 5th, 2013|Cool Stuff|

Today is National Running Day, and we want to hear from you!  Tell us WHY you run our facebook page, and you’ll automatically be entered to win a free race registration – a $30 value!

At the Charleston James Island Connector Run, we run to raise scholarship money for students with physical disabilities.

How about you?

I run 1

I run 2 I run 5

Get a FREE App for National Running Day

2017-01-23T22:29:13+00:00 June 3rd, 2013|Cool Stuff|

Welcome to our new Charleston James Island Connector Run blog. Did you know this is our 15th year?  Here you’ll find race information, running tips, and other cool stuff. We’re lucky enough to launch this blog just in time for National Running Day which is this Wednesday, June 5th.

To celebrate Running Day, you can snag a FREE APP!  Runner’s Log is letting you download it for free through June 5th. You can map your run using GPS, track your runs in a calendar, store your statistics and much more…  Download HERE.

 Runner's Log


Use the built-in map to plan out a route, or if using an iPhone, simply track your course with GPS.
View a calendar showing which days you ran recently.
View statistics and charts of weekly, monthly, and yearly progress.
Track the total mileage put on your running shoes (which typically last 350–550 miles).
Categorize log entries with user-defined tags.
Synchronize using iCloud.
Share on, Twitter, Facebook.
Import and export data in CSV format. Import GPX files.

Happy running!

The Charleston James Island Connector Run