The Falmouth Track Club announced this week that it has changed its name to The Falmouth Running Club. The topic was hotly debated among club members over the past few weeks, but it was decided that it was time to switch things up. The name change was approved by the board of directors and then sent out to a vote by the club members. The decision was approved, with 69 percent of the members voting in favor of changing the name.
New club president Jack Afarian, who was named the head of the FRC last month, said the move coincides with an overall decision by the club to both rebrand and improve how the club relates to its members and the public.
“Our main objective is to improve the club. We want to engage our membership fully; the morale has not been as high as it needs to be,” Afarian said. “Along with that we are going to be undertaking some new initiatives.”
The Falmouth Running Club will be moving into a new office at 661 Main Street in the coming weeks. The building has been overhauled and the president said that it is an exciting step forward. The Falmouth Running Club also has had its logo redesigned, with local artist Lindsay Benson designing the new look.
Afarian, who is also the director of the Cape Cod Marathon and has been a member of the club for nine years, said that the running club is excited to be moving forward with an initiative that will raise awareness and hopefully participation by women in the club. He said it will provide a safe running and social environment for women and girls in Falmouth who want to be involved.
In addition to that, the club will be starting a women’s race that they hope to schedule for this fall before moving it to an annual Mother’s Day event in the future. Also the club hopes to host a speaker series for women runners that will cover a variety of topics.
Aquatic Brewing, whose new location neighbors the Falmouth Running Club in the same building, will be partnering with the club for local running events, Afarian said. The details regarding the dates and frequency for those events has yet to be determined. “We want our club to be a social place, and a place for runners and walkers to enjoy themselves and their activity,” Afarian said.
Getting the youth of Falmouth more involved is also a point of emphasis for the Falmouth Running Club. The club is partnering with local schools to focus on mile-running, and Ken Gartner will continue to coach a competitive running group. The running club will continue to host a fun run for children as a part of the Cape Cod Marathon as well.
Afarian said that while more than two-thirds of the club was in favor of the name change, that he understands that nearly one-third of the club opposed it and that it will take some getting used to the switch for them. A point of concern for the opposition was losing a piece of the club’s history, but Afarian said that as the club evolves, this will be a chapter in that history, one he thinks is a positive one. The club was founded in 1973 and has gone by the name The Falmouth Track Club ever since. Afarian said that many people, such as Courtney Bird, were instrumental in the growth of the club over the past decades.
“We’re trying to do the exact opposite (of losing our history). We’re hoping to build it,” he said.
Looking to the future, the Falmouth Running Club hopes it will once again be a big part of the fabric of Falmouth. Afarian has high hopes for the club.
“If you look at where we are a year from now and what we’ve accomplished, I think people are going to be impressed.”