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Local groups join forces to launch running headquarters

By Staff | Feb 17, 2017

The Two Rivers Treads Center for Natural Running and Walking and Bros & Bras are creating a running headquarters in Ranson slated to open in spring. The facility will be the new home for Two Rivers Treads, the nation’s first minimalist shoe store and named one of the 50 Best Running Stores in America in 2016. It will also be the home base and retail outlet for Bros & Bras, a popular grassroots social fitness organization. Jointly, the “Running HQ” will include numerous areas for runner engagement and serve as a community headquarters for runners of all ages and abilities in the Eastern Panhandle and beyond.

The Running HQ will include: 1) The TrueForm Training Center, where people can relearn their natural running form on the innovative TrueForm runner. Staff will evaluate gait for injury-free running and efficiency; 2) Freedoms Run Headquarters, where runners can engage with staff, community mentors and coaches on how to prepare for any distance from a 5k to an ultra marathon; 3) Lockers, available for day use for those looking to store their belongings while out running; 4) Are You Ready for Minimal Test Site, because as the nation’s leader in minimalist footwear, Two Rivers Treads customers will have the opportunity to try out the latest in gear and footwear, often before it launches anywhere else in the world.

The Running HQ will also be a hub for meet-ups, where various groups can convene for weekly walks and runs and serve as a meeting place for all members of the running community, including youth, adult runners of all ages and abilities and teams.

In addition, the Running HQ will advertise local race information and be a source for race packet pickup, showcase the latest in running education, training and innovation and host a variety of running-related events and programs.

“We are excited about the opportunity to join forces with the large community running group Bros & Bras and create the training space we’ve always envisioned,” said Dr. Mark Cucuzzella, owner of Two Rivers Treads. “We will enjoy a larger space with easy access where we can have multiple TrueForm Runners for training and evaluations, plus an easy meet-up spot with parking and safety for group training runs. Our mission is to be a place of gathering, learning and discovering the love of running and health, plus bring new people into the mix.”

“We are excited to be working with Dr. Mark, who is an influential leader in the running community,” said Kevin Brackens, cofounder of Bros & Bras. “We hope the new location will bridge together runners from all across the county and we look forward to our new space being a resource for the entire state. By working together, we can improve the lives of citizens who walk or run on the streets and trails of West Virginia.”

The Running HQ will be located at 400 S. Mildred Street, is conveniently situated a block from the Ranson circle near Jefferson Medical Center with access to multiple safe running and walking routes. “The area around Jefferson Medical Center and the City of Ranson have been completely revitalized with streetscape for walkability, good lighting and more than abundant free parking,” said Cucuzzella.

The Running HQ will have weekday and weekend hours to offer the greatest flexibility to customers, members and those seeking advice.

About Two Rivers Treads

Founded in 2009, Two Rivers Treads has grown from a local running store and the nation’s first minimal shoe store to a nationally recognized leader in running health and small business, whose mission is to help and inspire people through running. Two Rivers Treads was named one of the 50 Best Running Stores in America for 2016 by Competitor Magazine and one of 100 small businesses in the county selected as Small Business Revolution. Two Rivers Treads’ commitment to West Virginia features multiple races, community events, youth running initiatives, school programs and training resources that provide hundreds of people each year, from children to seniors, with the motivation, know-how, and opportunity to run healthy for life. The store has been headquarters to the region’s premier event Freedoms Run for eight years. Held annually in the fall, the race features runners over 40 states. Its innovative work and story has been featured in the New York Times, Outside Magazine, Running Times, Runners World, Air Force Times, Run Washington, JAMA, Blue Ridge Outdoors, and other medical and media outlets.

About Bros and Bras

Bros & Bras was established in January 2015 by cofounders Kevin Brackens and Bill Young. The group provides organized weekly opportunities for community members to walk or run in Jefferson County in addition to hosting race events. Membership is free. Its mission is social fitness supported by its slogan of “No Expectations. No Judgment.” The organization is not-for-profit and has applied for 501c3 status. The group is governed by a board of directors containing seven members.