Grand Poobah – Peter B
Background: Love the Flying Irish & love running! The people, the routes, the post-run beer, the vibe and excitement and the acceptance of all. I’ve run and or some call it “competed” at about every distance from the 100 meters (say-it-slow “Half Fast” Ultimate Runner) up to 100 milers.
Year Joined the Flying Irish: 2005
Favorite Flying Irish Route: You know, that one with a downhill finish and no jay-walking.
Running Shoes: Generally, a light-weight neutral Brooks model but have run in most brands and just started in a pair of Hoka Cliftons. That plus sometimes snow boots as it can depend on the variables of the day.
Running Highlights: Met my wife post-race! That plus I love seeing walkers become runners, runners become marathoners etc.
Favorite Running Race: I will race no more for ever but I am in training to watch the Boston Marathon in the spring when the saps run(maple syrup joke in New England).
Sponsor Liaison – Jim Palm
Background: I moved to Spokane in 2012 and did not know a single person. By pure serendipity, I heard about this running club – The Flying Irish, and decided to check it out. Clearly, one of the best decisions I have ever made. The amazing friendships and memories that have been formed will last forever.
Year Joined the Flying Irish: 2013
Favorite Flying Irish Route: The 7-bridges route as it highlights the most iconic symbol of this great city, the Spokane River.
Running Shoes: Asics GT-2000
Running Highlights: I am a native of Minnesota where winters can be brutally chilly. I used to love those cold weather below zero runs where icicles form on your face and your eyelids freeze shut. So much fun!
Favorite Running Race: I absolutely love the Spokane to Sandpoi nt200 mile Relay Race – such great commaraderie with our team ‘Geezers and Dolls’. But I think the race that is the most special is our annual Flying Irish Halloween Romp thru the streets of Spokane. Hundresds of costumed crzaies taking over the city and then dancing the night away to the sounds of DJ Marathon. Priceless!
Membership Director – Lou Karl
Background: I started running in college as a way to quit smoking. I like to say that the stronger addiction won, although there were several years of fits and starts along the way. As the years went by I got to meet many amazing people through the vagabond lifestyle of running and racing. These days, I am content with just trying to stay up with my fellow Irish on Thursday evenings and competing for the old guy awards at a few local races.
Year Joined the Flying Irish: 2018. I actually started running with the Flying Irish when I moved here late in 2017, but the season was already over so those runs were unofficial
Favorite Flying Irish Route: Any run that runs alongside of or crosses the awesome Spokane River in all its fury.
Running Shoes: I was a big advocate of Asics Gel Lytes and DS Trainers for years. Now with the need for more cushioning and stability I have gone to the Brooks Ravennas.
Running Highlights: Completing my first marathon back in, wait for it, 1980. Running my first sub-3 hour marathon in Chicago, completing a marathon in all 50 states with the Maui Marathon back in 2008, and running the Windermere Marathon on a whim a few years ago which just happened to be my first visit to the amazing City of Spokane.
Favorite Running Race: Boston Marathon. There are many great races, but there is nothing quite like the history, enthusiasm and honor of running the grand-daddy of them all.
Secretary – Jody Shapiro
Background: I love running … and I love running groups! I’ve been running with the Flying Irish for over a decade now. I also lead the Manito Running Club on Saturdays and enjoy running with the Lantern, Beers & Blisters, SoHi, and Highlanders. In addition to running, I love to DJ and am known around town as DJ Marathon.
Year Joined the Flying Irish: 2009 (I think)
Favorite Flying Irish Route: Zig Zag
Running Shoes: Mizuno, Hoka, and Saucony for training. Adidas and Nike for racing.
Running Highlights: Running all three of the major American Marathons (Boston, Chicago, New York) in under three hours.
Favorite Running Race: Bloomsday, of course!
Treasurer – Aaron Crooks
Background: I was on the track team in high school, but took a long break from running until I started with the Flying Irish as a way to meet new people and it did not disappoint! Since joining the club I’ve made the best group of friends you could ever hope for and I look forward to seeing them every Thursday!
Year Joined the Flying Irish: 2014
Favorite Flying Irish Route: River Run
Running Highlights: Definitely meeting my wife at Flying Irish and completing my 11th Tough Mudder in TX.
Favorite Running Race: Got to be Spokane to Sandpoint with the best team ever. Go Geezers and Dolls! If you can spend two days (with no sleep) in a smelly van with the same people and then want to hang out again a few days later, you know you’ve met some pretty special people.
Director of Merchandise – Bret Whitesides
Background: Fire fighter, Medic, ER Nurse (basic adrenaline junkie)… BA from Boise State University. Currently working in HR/ Payroll support for Hospitals.
Year Joined the Flying Irish: Circa mid 2006
Favorite Flying Irish Route: I always enjoy the 7 Bridges route… running around Riverfront. There are more than 7 bridges on that route by the way…
Highlights: Several Marathons, MANY half marathons, Spokane to Sandpoint x5, countless 5 and 10 K’s
Favorite race: Spokane to Sandpoint! Party on wheels!!
Director of Communications – Tony Proctor
Background: High school middle of the pack runner, and amateur status through my 20s and 30s. Now that I’m elbow deep in middle age, I intend to lean heavily on Thursday evening Flying Irish runs to lead me to gold in the next summer olympics.
Year Joined the Flying Irish: July 8th 2021, the first day of in-person running after the great COVID scare of the 21st century.
Favorite Flying Irish Route: H.I.M. (Howard Indiana Monroe), mostly because it joined the Flying Irish after me.
Running Shoes: Anything Altra
Running Highlights: If it’s a Spokane group run, it’s a great run.
Favorite Running Race: Whatever I’m training for next, be it Spokane to Sandpoint, the Sundae Sunday, the Spokane Marathon, or Bloomsday, the races keep me motivated to continue to train and run.
Director of IT – Rabbitt Starno
Background: Became a runner back in high school, gained a lifelong love of the sport, and lost about 100 pounds.
Year Joined the Flying Irish: 2007?
Favorite Flying Irish Route: Stair Master. Gotta get those buns, hun!
Running Shoes: Saloman Speedcross trail runners
Running Highlights: Party weekends at the BBFR
Favorite Running Race: Spokane to Sandpoint. Who doesn’t love 2 days in a van with stinky runners?
Runner Representative – Aric Trantum
Background: I ran for one year at Mead high school for the legendary Pat Tyson. I didn’t really get back into it until 2012 when I started training for Bloomsday. I have increased my mileage every year since then and have surpassed 2000 miles each of the last three years.
Favorite Flying Irish route: River run
Running shoes: I like a variety (Nike, Altra, Hoka, Adidas) but my favorite brand are Saucony.
Favorite races: Sundae Sunday 10 miler, Portland Marathon and of course Bloomsday.