Hundreds expected to participate in April 6 Glade Top Trail run/walk

The 11th annual Glade Top Trail Run will be held Saturday, April 6, at Glade Top, a designated scenic byway within the Mark Twain National Forest in northern Ozark County and southern Douglas County. The race offers participants three designated distances, a 1-miler, a 4-miler and a 10-miler. All proceeds benefit the Pat Souder Henry Scholarship Fund.

Runners, pictured from left, Asher Henry, Gary Emrick and Michael Schiff are pictured at a creek crossing at last year’s event.

Liz Kyger

Organizers with the April 6 Glade Top Trail Run say they’re expecting a big crowd at this year’s event. Now in its eleventh year, the run/walk event offers great camaraderie, a challenging route and a whole lot of fun, all set amongst the remote and rugged hills of the Mark Twain National Forest in northern Ozark County and southern Douglas County. 

Last year more than 300 people participated in the race or volunteered to help with the event, and organizers say this year is shaping up to have great attendance as well. It’s not too late to sign up to participate, as registration runs through race morning.

The run will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday, April 6, from Wolf Junction (located at Roads 149 and 147). Those who are participating or registering should arrive early. 

This year’s event offers participants three different distance options with the following registration fees: $15 for 1 mile run/walk; $30 for 4.25 mile run/walk; and $50 for the 10.25 mile distance. 

Organizers say the 1-mile course is a good option for casual walkers, beginners and those who are interested in an easier trail all around. The 4.25-mile and 10.25 mile trails on the other hand are on “extremely challenging terrain,” according to the registration form. Participants should be physically prepared for water crossings, log barriers, deep gullies and uneven running surfaces. There is a four hour time limit on the 10.25-mile course.

Registered races are treated to a freshly grilled chicken lunch after they return from their run/walk, and meals are available to purchase for $6 for race spectators or those not registered to race. 

An awards ceremony will be held with awards given to first overall male and female; first overall masters male and female; first overall grandmasters male and female; top three in each age group; and special finisher awards will be given for top times in the 10.25-mile race. 

Those who are registered to race will also be entered into drawings to win more than 100 door prizes. 

All proceeds raised by the race entry forms benefit the Pat Souder Henry Scholarship, a scholarship for Ava students created in honor of a lifelong educator and prominent member of the Ava community.

The race is a 501c3 non-profit organization.


Raffles to benefit Jeff Barry family

This year, the event is also featuring a double raffle to benefit Jeff Barry, a longtime Glade Top Trail Run participant who lives near the trail and was paralyzed in a car crash with a drunk driver last fall.

Tickets are $10 for one ticket, $25 for three tickets or $40 for five tickets. One hundred percent of the ticket sales from the raffles will go directly to Jeff Barry and his family. 

Two winners will receive a getaway in one of two Airbnb locations, the “Glade Top Fire Tower” in the Thornfield area and either the  “Point Royale Poolside 2” or “Poolside 5” in the Branson area.

“On November 8, 2023, Jeff Barry and his two children were hit by a drunk driver. The children were physically unhurt, but Jeff suffered a severe spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed. He was life-flighted for emergency surgery and spent one month in the ICU before transferring to a spinal cord rehab facility in Colorado. After months, they now transition back home where Jeff will continue outpatient treatments with multiple practitioners to learn skills to make life more manageable.

“Prior to the accident, Jeff was a stay-at-home dad, homeschooling the children and working the family farm, while Rachel, his wife, managed Jean’s Healthway in Ava... The Barrys are impactful community leaders and generous and kind individuals. Please help us support a genuinely wonderful family as they navigate an unimaginable time,” a flyer about the event says. 

Both raffle winners will be announced on April 6, at the Glade Top trail Run during the post-race festivities, but participation or attendance at the race is not required to win or purchase raffle tickets.

Another exciting aspect of this year’s event is that the Show-Me State Games commissioner will be at the run to honor Liz Kyger, Glade Top Trail Run race director, who has been named the ​2023 female adult athlete of the Show-Me State Games.

On the Show-Me Games website, Kyger and her athletic history is profiled:

“Liz is not only a great athlete herself but is an incredible advocate for the sport of running. She played three sports in high school and went on to play basketball at what is now known as the College of the Ozarks. While there, the cross country coach recruited her. Liz’s time with the team and their encouragement made her fall in love with running! That love of running helped her earn an All-American title in the marathon in Houston in 1981.  

“In 2008, Liz was diagnosed with breast cancer. While going through chemo and radiation, she learned about the senior games and made a goal to qualify for the National Senior Games. The 2011 National Senior Games was hosted in Houston, the same location where she competed in the NAIA National Championships 30 years earlier! This gave her motivation to return to training and break her goal! She competed in multiple events and won overall female in the 5k! Liz has been a huge part of the Missouri State Senior Games ever since!”


Find out more

To find out more about the Glade Top Trail Run or to register online/print out a registration form, visit 

To purchase raffle tickets for the Airbnb stays benefitting the Barry family, visit the “Glade Top Trail Run” Facebook page and use the QR code on the flyer that is posted.

Ozark County Times

504 Third Steet
PO Box 188
Gainesville, MO 65655

Phone: (417) 679-4641
Fax: (417) 679-3423