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The Sheyenne River Valley National Scenic Byway know is a beautiful place and every year, the Sheyenne Valley Shuffle gives runners a chance to see that beauty up close.
"That's what we talk about with the runners when they go on the bus," said race director Mary Lee Nielson. "They talk about the byway."
But this year, the race is changing its format and will give runners a chance to see a different stretch of the byway than in previous years.
The Shuffle takes place August 25 at Valley City State University's Lokken Field, and registration is currently taking place both online at active.com and at the Rosebud Visitor Center.
Aside from the timing of the race, which usually takes place in September, the biggest changes to the race this year are the distance of the main race, as well as a change in route.
Instead of a half marathon running from Baldhill Dam, as in previous years, this year's race is being run as a 10K, partially to acknowledge the byway's 10th anniversary.
"It's just kind of a fun thing to do for our 10th anniversary," Nielson said.
There is also a 5K race that goes through Valley City and a kiddie race that are also part of the festivities.
The 10K will have busses take runners to the start, south on highway 21, 6.2 miles away from the stadium. The runners will finish by running down 8th Ave SW and into Lokken Stadium.
The 5K will leave the stadium and go around Valley City, including a brief stretch along Main St., and a portion through city park. The route is different than previous years, Nielson said.
"Being a race director, it's kind of a nice route because you have a lot of roads that don't have roads coming from both ways, so you don't have to watch as many intersections," she said. "It's really one of the safer routes we've ever run."
One thing that didn't change? The start, which will be announced at each race by a cannon.
The registration cost currently is $25 for the 5K and $35 for the 10K online. All money raised goes towards replacing the interpretive panels along the byway.
Nielson said she's hoping for 100 people between the two races, which start at 9 a.m. (10K) and 9:45 a.m. (5K) and hopes to get VCSU students involved by offering a discount for runners from the college.
With the registration fee, runners will get a t-shirt and other goodies from local sponsors. 10K runners also will get a decorative item for hanging medals, made locally by Malach Sheet Metal.
"We have wonderful sponsors and that makes all the difference when people help you out," Nielson said.