The heat did not hold back the community as crowds enjoyed a morning of events on Park Avenue and in Central Park. Photos by: Jim Carchidi
George Mrvos was among many revelers seeking shade and hydration on a hot Independence Day morning, but his cape and makeup helped him stand out in the massive crowd. “I’m a watermelon superhero,” he said, referencing the costume he wore for the 2023 Watermelon 5K.
More than 2,600 participants filled the streets of Winter Park for the sold-out event – presented by Track Shack and AdventHealth – that was only the start of the 4th of July festivities. After runners and walkers clocked their times, a watermelon-eating contest and kids’ run drew spectators while city staff tested the Main Stage speakers and inflated bounce slides. Events ran until 11 a.m. and included games, live music and free refreshments, but the biggest attraction was the community.
“We’ve been running the 5K since 2008,” said Nicole Mrvos. “It’s a fun event, it’s camaraderie, and it’s a chance to be part of something big.”