Mac Kern gets ready for the 5K race he’s planning for today.

Mac Kern walked into North Laurel High School’s front office Wednesday looking a little tired.

And understandably so.

He had just finished writing and studying for his third — and final — Advanced Placement exam of the week. And, still, the work wasn’t quite done.

Today (Saturday, May 17), Kern is hosting The Eagle Project 5K, a 3.1 mile race.

The run will help Kern make a giant leap toward earning the distinction of Eagle Scout by fulfilling his community project requirement.

Kern, 17, came up with the idea for a five kilometer race with the help of his dad Verne.

“It was something my dad had wanted to do for a long time,” he said. “We both run. He runs a lot of 5Ks.”

Kern had initially planned for the race to be a simple fundraiser for a local charity, until he realized that didn’t comply with the rules for the Eagle project.

“You have to benefit someone with something other than money,” he explained.

Kern quickly thought of the Christian Shelter for the Homeless.

“One thing they really need is computer equipment — desks, possibly a printer, printer paper,” he said. “And they only have one computer for 48 people. They told me people like to print their resumes out and some high school students even do their homework on it.”

Kern got to work. He met with Mayor Troy Rudder, asked the London City Council to close down Main Street, got T-shirts printed and got major sponsors to donate.

He hopes to raise about $1,000, money that will go directly to the shelter.

The race — which is open to everyone — will begin and end behind London Elementary School.

Completing the community project won’t be Kern’s final step in attaining Eagle Scout status.

“I still need a few merit badges,” he said. “Hopefully I’ll get it wrapped up this summer. My parents won’t let me get my driver’s license until I have my Eagle Scout.”

Registration for the Eagle Project 5K is $15. Registration is at 8 a.m. The race starts at 9 a.m.

Staff writer Tara Kaprowy can be reached by e-mail at tkaprowy@ sentinel-echo.com.

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