The History of the Baltimore Women’s Classic 5K from the Perspective of Mother and Daughter

Wednesday, April 6, 2022

Running the Baltimore Women’s Classic 5K from the Mother’s Perspective: By Kathy Schaub

Running is something that, for me, evolved over time.  It began with friends as a way to get exercise and connect with other women.  Most races in the 1980s were co-ed…The Rite of Spring, The Constellation 10K, The Crustacean Crawl, and the Father’s Day 5K.  The Lady Equitable was unique because it was a women’s only race.  It was sponsored by Equitable Back and the course was in downtown Baltimore.  After many mergers, Equitable Bank no longer exists nor does this race.  

Meghan Fugate and her mom Kathy Schaub

The Lady Equitable gave way to the Lady Avia 5 Miler.  It was, as the name says, a race for women.  I don’t remember there being any organized training groups to help participants prepare and I don’t remember there being any finisher medals or ribbons – just a race number and a t-shirt.  There was recognition for those who placed 1st, 2nd or 3rd in their age group.  There was also a joy of sharing the experience with other women to accomplish the same goal.

Things changed with the Baltimore Women’s Classic 5K.  Now there were organized training groups.  For several years, I joined the group at Goucher College.  I either went alone or with my daughter Meghan who is now a coach.   Not only did I get training tips and practices but also the opportunity to meet other women with a shared goal.

In all three races – Lady Equitable, Lady Avia, and the Baltimore Women’s Classic, the gift and the goal are the same.  Statistics measure things like how many signed up, how many participated, how much money was raised for a worthwhile charity and the winning time.  What cannot be measured is the sense of accomplishment, the joy of being encouraged and supported by others as well as encouraging others in return.  Seeing grandmothers with their daughters and granddaughters all on the course together is awesome.

For me, the best thing is doing those races with my daughter.  Meghan is the one with the ribbons in her hair, the homemade tutu and butterfly wings hugging and encouraging the women who were in her training groups and anyone else who needs the courage to cross the finish line.  For me, that is what running is all about.  

Running the Baltimore Women’s Classic from the perspective of the daughter: By Meghan Schaub Fugate

I have vivid memories of my mom running with friends when I was younger.  I couldn’t tell you how far or how fast they ran, just that they got together and seemed to have a great time!  I also remember my family joining my mom at races in Downtown Baltimore.  You could stand on the bridge over Light Street and watch all the runners stream by.  It was such a cool moment.  

Several years later I was allowed to run with my mom.  You had to be a certain age to participate in races back then.  We would run local 5k’s including the Lady Avia.  Being able to run with my mom and an all women’s field in a truly magical experience.  To see women supporting one another was awesome! 

Fast forward to college and the start of the BWC as we have come to know it.  My mom and I would participate in the training group at Goucher College.  We would meet other mother/daughter teams and share our experiences and goals.  I sometimes thought the training was the best part of the whole experience of BWC!

I had the opportunity to become a volunteer coach at Catonsville Community College and I was able to share my memories and experiences with those women.  They were creating memories of their own experiences.  Women were now coming with their daughters, granddaughters, nieces and daughters in law.  It became families sharing this experience and completing this race.  

Today, I have been extremely fortunate to have been a coach with BWC for many many years.  I have seen women come back and share their experiences with women new to this.  We also do a virtual option and have women from all over the country join us.  It has also become a family run with fathers and sons cheering on the women in their lives!  But the best part for me, has been and always will be, crossing the finish line with my mom!


Wednesday, April 6, 2022

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