Arrowhead Lodge Running Club

Members of the Arrowhead Lodge Running Club pose for a group photo. The group meets at 6 p.m. every Thursday. 

MILTON — At 6 p.m. every Thursday, community members gather at Arrowhead Lodge to run or walk. They take a short route around town together, before gathering around the bar for a drink and a laugh. 

When Frank Fahey first came up with the idea, he wasn't sure how many people would show up. He was pleasantly surprised.

“We’re enthused about it, and the people that have been coming love it," he said. "So we figured we might as well just keep going."

All routes are loops that finish back at the Lodge, with the opportunity for drinks and socializing at Arrowhead afterwards.

When the Lodge's owners, Nick and Lauren Mark, moved to Milton in 2018, they arrived craving a tight-knit community. 

“There wasn’t really a place to hang out or meet people. As new people to Vermont, we were really craving a social gathering space where we could make friends without having to drive to Burlington or St. Albans,” Lauren said.

The Marks’ befriended the owner of the Arrowhead building and decided they would open a bar that could become a place for community gathering. The Lodge opened in February 2020, just a few weeks before the start of the pandemic.

A couple of months ago, Lauren Mark was out for a jog on her day off when a neighbor down the street flagged her down. It was Fahey, coming to broach the idea of a running club at Arrowhead Lodge.

“He planned to come and talk to me [at the Lodge] but we, no pun intended, ran into each other on Main Street,” Lauren said.

Lauren immediately jumped on board, knowing that Fahey's mission of creating community aligned with her and Nick's. The running club was quickly created.

“We have a map that shows 1.8 miles, another one that shows 3 miles, and then a third one that shows 4 miles. Much of the route is on local roads around here,” Fahey said.

Running is not a requirement. Fahey mentioned they encourage everyone to come join, whether they are running or walking.

“Initially it started out with only four or five of us. Now some nights we’ll get as many as 14 or 15,” Fahey said.

Fahey began the club in Milton after being inspired by a previous running club he had been a part of in Florida for many years.

After going to the Arrowhead Lodge for drinks a couple of times, Fahey realized the Lodge would be a great place to gather. Participants could come and run or walk, and then meet inside the Lodge for drinks and a snack.

“It’s just a fun social way to get some exercise and be healthy,” Lauren said.

No fees are required, and there is no need to sign up.

“That’s something that we try to stress to everybody,” Fahey said. “You don’t have to sign up for anything, and in fact, you’re not committed to come every Thursday. If you can make it great, if you can’t, then come next week.”

The Arrowhead Lodge Running Club will continue to run until the snow flies, and then take a winter hiatus. Fahey hopes the group will return again in the spring.

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