8-Tuff Duffer–The popular annual foot race across St. John attracts athletes and antics

It’s 5am on a Saturday and not only am I up and dressed, I’m headed to town, a.k.a. Cruz Bay.  The early bird catches the sunrise, after which I’ll be hoofing it over the mountainous terrain of St. John for 8.3 miles with almost a thousand other souls, or in this case, soles. I’m neither a runner nor an athlete of any kind, but people like me really rule this race. The annual 8-Tuff Miles foot race on St. John celebrates its 20th year today. Young and old, big and little, sober and spirited, the 8-Tuff race attracts and accepts all who register to make the pilgrimage to Coral Bay on foot. The speedy runners who hit the finish line first are missing much of the fun. What takes the fastest of folks less than 45 minutes to finish can take some of us slower pokes more than 4 hours. Water stations manned by St. John volunteers greet racers every 100+ yards with water and Gatorade. Finishers cross the line in the ball field across from the Moravian church in Coral Bay, just down the street from Indigo Grill and Skinny Legs Bar & the Grill, which both host a lively after party following the race. If walking 8-Tuff ain’t your thang, join the standing road rooters that line the course, cheering, singing, juggling, and rock in’ out at sunrise for those energetic entrants. It’s appreciated! For race results and a little event history, checkout http://8tuffmiles.com/results.htm