NeveHarms Steve Shostrom has been involved in every progressive step in the phenomenal growth of road racing in the Peoria area. He began distance running and road racing in the early seventies at a time when road racing and marathons were looked upon as a curious type of sport.
In December 1973, he, with the co-assistance of Red McGraw, now assistant track coach at Bradley University, founded the Illinois Valley Striders, an organization devoted to improving the quality of road racing and to helping runners in their own self-improvement. It has grown from an original membership of seven to over 1,000, one of Central Illinois' largest participating sports clubs. Steve has been president of the Illinois Valley Striders since its beginning.
Shostrom has been race director for countless races in the Peoria area. By far, the most prominent is the Steamboat Classic. From 158 runners who competed in the first Steamboat race, the 1983 Steamboat Classic attracted 2,010 runners, a tribute to the dedication of Steve to promotion and direction of road racing. The Steamboat Classic is now a cornerstone race of the Illinois Grand Prix circuit throughout the State of Illinois.
Steve has won a number of honors for his own performance as a runner. He is most proud of being the first Peorian in the Boston Marathon in 1973 with a two hour and thirty-five minute finishing time.
Shostrom is a supervisory attorney at the National Labor Relations Board where he has been employed for 16 years. In addition to being president of the Illinois Valley Striders, he is vice president of the National Road Runners Club of America, and has been on the Park District Recreation Committee for ten years.
Steve Shostrom has been involved in every progressive step in the phenomenal growth of road racing in the Peoria area. He began distance running and road racing in the early seventies at a time when road racing and marathons were looked upon as a curious type of sport.
Mark Olson came to Peoria in 1963, and because of his most successful background in hockey in Michigan, he immediately involved himself in the promotion and development of hockey in the Peoria area. He became player-coach of the Pekin Stars from 1964-68, and then in 1971 he provided a leadership role in cooperation with Pete Bardezbanian, his sons, Mike, Rick and Joe, and other volunteers to form the Peoria Blades hockey team. At the same time, Mark gave liberally of his time and talents to further youth hockey in the Peoria area.