Rock Island’s Terell Williams remembers his first venture back on the Rock Island track in the Q-C Alumni meet a year ago.
He participated in the pole vault, an event he still coaches for the Rocks, but the former college decathlete also participated in the 400 relay with three other teammates.
“For me, it was a good experience, the first time I actually jumped at a cross bar since college,” said Williams, who graduated in 2008 from the University of Illinois-Chicago. “So it was kind of fun to get out and do it again.”
Former Rock Island and Augustana hurdler Ashley Anderson remembers the event a year ago, too.
"It's always nice to get back on the track and show how you were, and that you are getting better," Anderson said. "I loved it."
Williams and Anderson plan to get out and do it again Saturday, July 22 at the 2nd annual Quad-Cities Alumni Meet at Rock Island Public Schools Stadium.
“I actually started preparing for this year about four months out, but I have bad knees so I had knee surgery on my left knee two years ago and will have it on my right knee probably this year after the meet,” Williams said. “Hopefully, then it will be good to go to do it for many years to come.”
The meet is open to anyone who’s an alum of a Quad-City school, even others who are now affiliated with other Q-C schools but are not alums. Field events start at 11, and all are available. Running events, including sprints, hurdles, relays and a mile run, begin at noon. There will also be a kids fun run of 100 meters and family fun relays. The event is open to athletes on both sides of the river.
Vesey says the idea for the meet came from Rock Island track coaches who were aware of other alumni meets who thought it would be a good idea for Rock Island. It’s also a bit of a fundraiser for the track team.
“The goal is just to get people out moving basically,” Vesey said, “for former athletes to come out and see what they still got and have fun.
“Last year, we had the 4 x 100 for the boys and the alumni almost beat the high school kids. It’s nice to see some of them still had it in them. It’s kind of like a track reunion, except that we are running.”
It’s not unusual for people to come out the stands and register for an event, Vesey said said. Registration is still open on race day. A trainer will be on hand should there be any injuries.
High school athletes are allowed to participate in events that take place between alumni. No medals are given to high school participants, and they are allowed to participate under IHSA rules, Vesey said.
Williams still remembers the fun he had a year ago. The 32-year-old Rock Island alum didn’t have to compete against too many pole vaulters.
“To get out on the track and run again, that was a lot of fun to me,” said Williams, who ran on the 2002-2003 Rock Island track teams. "It’s fun to get out and compete.”
"It's really nice to see everybody come back together and show their stuff," Anderson said.