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QCT Bix 7 aims for spectacular 50th

Ed Froehlich and Debbie Anselm join planning for blowout celebration

DAVENPORT, Iowa (December 1, 2023) – Quad-City Times Bix 7 icon Ed Froehlich and newspaper executive Debbie Anselm, along with race director Michelle Juehring, will spearhead the planning for a glitteringly golden 50th running of the nationally acclaimed event next summer.

Juehring made the announcement Thursday night at a holiday dinner for more than 170 volunteer committee chairs.

“With the enthusiastic partnership of major sponsors, our dozens of supporting sponsors, thousands of dedicated volunteers and wide community support, we’re expecting to roll out an event that, literally, will take your breath away,” she said. “Big plans are falling into place quickly, and we’ll begin unveiling them early in the new year. Registration begins in December.”

She noted that the Bix 7 was selected to be one of eight National Championships for the Road Runners Club of America in 2024. The goal of the RRCA Championship Event Series is to shine a spotlight on well-run, community-based events, and to promote the sport of running by recognizing the top performing runners in the Open, 40+, 50+, and 60+ categories for both men and women as RRCA Champions.

Froehlich, who retired in 2019 after 40 years of leading the Bix 7 to national prominence, said he’s excited all over again and couldn’t resist when asked to help.

“The 50th running of the Bix 7, next July 27, also marks the opening of the Olympics, so we’re going for the gold here, too,” he said. “We’re inviting everyone who’s ever joined in before, and their families, to make more wonderful memories for a lifetime.”

Anselm, who has been a key partner in the Bix 7 since 2015 as then-publisher of the Quad-City Times, said her love for the event has grown every year. Although she has since become executive director of the Iowa Newspaper Association, she said she has kept her family residence here and is also eagerly rolling up her sleeves.

“The Bix 7 means so very much to the Quad-Cites and entire region,” she said. “It lifts our spirits, brings families and old friends together, sparks commerce, drives tourism and, whether we’re runners or walkers, makes us all a little more healthy.”

Paul Schmidt, president of Cornbelt Running Club, added that the excitement will infuse all Bix 7 events, including the Arconic Junior Bix for children, the Iowa American Water Bix at 6 training runs, Genesis Sports Medicine Brady Street Sprints and the Running Wild Sports and Fitness Expo. He said among highlights will be the dedication of a bronze statue of Karl Ungurean, a widely admired leader of the running community who died last December. Ungurean was one of the founders of Cornbelt Running Club and an early race director of the Bix 7.