Mr. Ed’s Super Bowl 5K will go virtual

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 18 November 2020 at 12:13 pm

Race organizers will still give away many scholarships to Roy-Hart seniors

File photos by Tom Rivers: Runners, some wearing football jerseys, complete a 5K in Middleport on Feb. 4, 2018. The annual Mr. Ed’s Super Bowl Warm-Up draws several hundred runners for the race.

MIDDLEPORT – One of the area’s most popular small-town 5K races will be going virtual due to restrictions and guidance in the Covid-19 pandemic.

The 32ndannual Mr. Ed’s Super Bowl Warm-Up won’t be in a big gathering, but people are still welcome to sign up and do the distance on their own, said Donnie Heschke, the race organizer.

The race has attracted up to 550 runners in Middleport. There is usually a large party after in the Middleport Fire Hall with chili, lots of socializing and awards.

That won’t be happening this year. But Heschke said the race will continue. People can run the 5K anytime between Jan. 29 and Feb. 7, 2021. They can run the course in Middleport or do the distance elsewhere, even on a treadmill. They then enter their times through the Score This website.

If they are among the first 300 to pay the $25 registration fee, they will get a long-sleeved shirt with the Mr. Ed’s horse wearing a mask, as well as a list of sponsors on the back.

“It’s a bummer,” Heschke said about going virtual. “But we wanted to keep it going and not skip a year.”

The race has proven to be a big fundraiser for scholarships for Roy-Hart graduates. Last year race organizers gave out six scholarships for $1,500 each for RH grads headed to college for careers in nursing, law enforcement, firefighting or the medical field.

Heschke said the race has some reserve funds and will be able to maintain the scholarship giving for the 2021 grads.

He said sponsors continue to make a big difference for the race, which has given away $62,000 in the past 10 years. Anyone interested in sponsoring the race can contact Heschke at

“We want to give the money away,” he said.

He looks forward to the race in 2022, when he expects a very large turnout for an in-person event.

Mr. Ed’s has one of the biggest post-race celebrations of any 5K in WNY. In this photo from Feb. 4, 2018, Valerie Wood serves chili in the Middleport Fire Hall.