Lost Foresters Raise Funds for Orphans in Uganda

Every Labor Day, the Krohn's Organize a Series of Races at Pine Valley Park in Cloquet

CLOQUET, Minn – Dozens of hearty Northlanders chose to spend their Labor Day morning by waking up early and making their way to Pine Valley Park in Cloquet for a tradition one family started many years ago.

Now, the excitement is growing and the fun is expanding into the ‘lost forest.’

“It’s just so Minnesotan, it’s awesome,” said Brian Krohn, Organizer of the Lost Forester Adventure Run.

“I’m really nervous and excited,” said race participant Sarah Hagaton-Howes.

Dirt, bugs and mud didn’t stop many mighty Minnesotans from lacing up and finding their best flannel this Labor Day.

“This is all a crazy idea from my father,” said Krohn. “It’s through swamps and bogs and hills and it’s all off trail.”

“We do races across the area,” said Hagaton-Howes.

For the past few years, Labor Day brings fundraising for the Blue House in Uganda.

“It’s a pretty cool connection that we can have something that’s so culturally relevant to the north woods, just slogging through the woods like a forester.”

Krohn and his father Tim love taking time to enjoy the outdoors and lend a helping hand to orphaned girls across the world.

“My father has been working with and supporting the Blue House for years now,” said Krohn.

An avid marathon runner, Tim wanted to create a new course this year.

“He wanted to make a really hard race, so he came up with the Lost Forester which is a grueling off trail run through the back woods,” said Krohn.

“We thought we would try this race. We thought was just like a trail race through Pine Valley which we’re all really familiar with,” said Hagaton-Howes.

But Hagaton-Howes and her group of ten would soon be surprised.

The lost foresters ran nearly twelve-and-a-half miles before making a 12 meter trek up a large ski hill.

Lost forester Jimmer Hagerl arrived with excitement in his eyes and smiles to share.

In 2016, Hagerl won the Pine Valley 11K. This past summer he ran Grandma’s Full Marathon.

“Being healthy and being active is helping me fight,” said Hagerl.

Fight, for life. Hagerl is battling his own trail of difficulties.

“I ended up getting diagnosed with brain cancer just over a year ago,” said Hagerl.

Now, his diagnosis is not letting him stop doing what he loves.

“With chemo treatments and different kinds of treatment, I’m fighting being tired and things like that,” said Hagerl. “I forget about my diagnosis when I get into the zone.”

A zone, full of dangerous terrain and corners of caution.

“While I can still run and still be active I still want to help fight my cancer by being healthy,” said Hagerl.

This group of rough runners are making the most of their journey this Labor Day through the Lost Forest of Cloquet.

“It’s been a blast, plus it’s a great way to hang out with my dad,” said Krohn.

The race agenda also included a 5K and 11K Pine Valley Trail Run.

All proceeds from Monday’s races will be sent to the Blue House in Uganda.

Click here if you would like to donate.

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