Kallie Schuetz - Goshen Millrace Dam Beer Run Club

Kallie Schuetz

Goshen Millrace Dam Beer Run Club

Published May 2023

The Happiest Four Miles

First off – it’s not all about the beer…

It’s really nice to get to Goshen Brewing Company with the group after our Thursday run and have a beer with each other, but I think the best thing about the Goshen Dam Beer Run Club is that it’s a group of people who come together one day a week – every Thursday – to exercise in a comfortable, supportive and really fun environment. Truth is, we have runners and walkers in the club who don’t even drink – they just enjoy being a part of the camaraderie that we have, which is pretty special.

The Goshen Dam Beer Run Club is for the whole community – you can run or walk or even ride a bike. We meet every Thursday at 6 p.m. at the Millrace power station. It’s a four-mile stretch along the Goshen Millrace to the dam and then back to the start. It’s a ‘no-drop’ run, meaning no one gets left behind – each person runs it their own way. Afterwards, when everyone is accounted for, we go to Goshen Brewing Company for some food and beer and to enjoy each other’s company. Jesse (Sensenig) and the folks at GBCo have been so supportive – they love having us there and they endorse our club and work with us anytime we have a special event. We even have a club flag there, and our logo is aligned with theirs. It really feels like a ‘Goshen thing’ – the way we support GBCo and they support us back…

In the nicer months we tend to have between 15 and 20 people for a Thursday run, but even during the slow months, even in winter, we’re out there running. It’s usually a pretty even split between runners and walkers, but we do have people join on bikes also. People in our club range from their 20’s to 70’s – it’s a total ‘no pressure’ zone. It’s all about having fun, working out and supporting one another.

And, yes…

Beer.

Kallie Schuetz - Goshen Millrace Dam Beer Run Club
Kallie Schuetz - Goshen Millrace Dam Beer Run Club
Kallie Schuetz - Goshen Millrace Dam Beer Run Club

Photography provided by Goshen Millrace Dam Beer Run Club

The group started seven years ago, and I’ve been running things for the past couple of years with one of the founders, Steve Freeto – who is no longer in the area all of the time. I think the fact that Goshen has something like this – on top of all the other great things in our community; it speaks volumes about how we have something for everyone, and how it’s all about creating and supporting community. Also, we’re blessed to have these spaces like the millrace to be able to enjoy. It’s just an absolutely beautiful place to run – except for the geese, because they’re just crazy. But that’s another subject…

Aside from the exercise, our main thing is to find ways to make it fun. We have dress up nights and anytime there’s a holiday we try to incorporate it in our run – on St. Patrick’s Day we’ve done Leprechaun Runs and on Halloween you just never know what, or who, will be running the millrace. And on all nights, once we get to GBCo we always have a lot of fun. Sometimes we’ll do karaoke – who doesn’t want to sing Mr. Brightside?! Sometimes we have dinner, or chill and play Uno, it just depends on the night…

Fitness and health have always been important to me – and running was always my bread and butter. I ran Track and Field competitively and I’ve always believed in exercise and self-improvement.

I tore my ACL a few years ago playing ultimate frisbee, and it was a setback. When I finally worked back to the point where I could start thinking about running again, I found out about the Goshen Dam Beer Run Club and I looked into it. I knew some people who were involved in it and it felt like a good, safe place for me to restart with running.

Finding the club was big for me – coming back from that injury – because I felt right away I could relate to the people in the group. We’re all just regular people; people who love to run, people who love the challenge of self-improvement, people who love creating unity and togetherness, and we’re people who’ve been hurt and have come back from it.

For me, being a part of this group is really meaningful; it’s one of those ‘hard work pays off’ things…and for others, I think the fact that it’s so much fun and totally pressure-free helps them be able to keep exercise a consistent part of their life.

Written by Jake Sandock