‘Run for the Hills’ raises $13,826 for Children’s Home Society

By Stephen Baldwin, RealWV

A group of 67 spent this past weekend driving the backroads of West Virginia…for 24 hours straight. They drove 585 miles from Seneca Rocks all the way to the Mothman Statue in Point Pleasant on pavement, gravel, dirt, mud, and rocks.

But it wasn’t just a joyride; it was a very successful fundraiser hosted by Backroads Appalachia, with the event bringing in $13,826 for the Children’s Home Society of West Virginia. CHS operates across the state providing adoption, foster, advocacy, behavioral health, and casework assistance to children and families. 

“I could have easily fallen into that system as a young man,” Jed Smith, Director of Operations for Backroads Appalachia, says. “I want to do something for the kids that are affected in this state.” 


Vehicles fell into three categories–side-by-sides, Subarus, and everything else with tires between 31-37 inches.

Eric Nestor by his Honda Talon after finishing first in all categories.

The fastest finisher was Eric Nestor in a Honda Talon side-by-side. He finished the 585-mile route in a time of 15 hours and 53 minutes.

In the Subaru category, Brandt Keyser finished first in 21 hours with his Forrester.

Gary Pelini in his Jeep Gladiator.

In the 31-37 inch tire category (which had vehicles ranging from Ford Raptors to Toyota 4Runners to a Kia Sportage, Gary Pelini finished first in his Jeep Gladiator in 20 hours.

Full results can be found below:

More adventures are on the way

“Been a wild ride,” Jed said afterwards. But this “Run for the Hills” is only the beginning. They are already planning another one later this year.

Stay tuned to The Real WV for details.

Freddia Abe captured this picture Saturday evening along the trail. He’s a mechanic in Loudon County, VA, who traveled to West Virginia for the inaugural “Run for the Hills’ hosted by Backroads Appalalchia. Photo by Freddie Abe.

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