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Kyle Lovern/Williamson Daily News Tug Valley Road Runners Club President Alexis Batausa was the guest speaker at the monthly meeting of the Tug Valley Chamber of Commerce.

The Tug Valley Road Runners Club has grown through the years and continues to offer races and programs for citizens of the area.

TVRRC President Alexis Batausa, who also works for the Williamson Health and Wellness Center, was the guest speaker at the monthly luncheon meeting of the Tug Valley Chamber of Commerce on Thursday at El Sazon restaurant in Williamson. More than 20 attended the meeting conducted by chamber Director Wes Wilson.

Batausa told how the running club holds races each month. Many of those help other non-profit organizations raise money, at the same time promoting a healthier lifestyle to those who participate. For example, the upcoming Cause for Paws 10K, 5K and one-mile walk scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 16, helps raise funds for the no-kill animal shelter in Mingo County.

There are one to two race events each month, said Batausa, who has been a member of the TVRRC since 2012.

The biggest race of the year is the annual Hatfield-McCoy Marathon, which will celebrate its 20th anniversary in June. That was started by former TVRRC President David Hatfield. Batausa noted that the first year there were just a handful of runners and now the marathon and half-marathon draw close to 1,000 runners from across the United States and even some foreign countries. This year's marathon will be Saturday, June 8. (The Williamson Daily News will have more on this event in a future article.)

For a complete list of races go to the TVRRC Facebook page.

In other chamber business, Wilson announced three new members had joined the local civic organization. They were S.B. Catering of Williamson, Back Woods Rentals of North Matewan and iDesign Graphics of South Williamson.

Mike Walker of Air Evac of Logan spoke briefly about his company offering a discount to chamber members.

President Robert E. Gunter of Southern W.Va. Community and Technical College gave a brief rundown of some new programs the local college is bringing to Williamson. One is a nursing program and the other is a physical therapy assistant program. More information will be released in the near future.

Kyle Lovern is editor for the Williamson Daily News. He can be contacted at 304-236-3526 or via email at klovern@HDMediaLLC.com.

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