Our cover kids this month are participants in the Girls on the Run 5K, just as the starting gun went off.

Who: These are the participants in the Girls on the Run 5K, just as the starting gun went off.

Where: Columbus Commons

When: 11 a.m., Saturday, May 30, 2015

The backstory: Our staff photographer Chris Parker drew the assignment this particular morning and found himself surrounded by girls, girls and more girls at this increasingly popular semi-annual sports event. As a dad of three (two of them 16-year-old twin girls), Parker said the happy, huge crowd of active kids did not bother him in the least: "It was really crowded but everyone was in a wonderful mood," he said. And the lousy forecast never materialized into rain or thunderstorms, he said, noting, "It ended up being perfect weather."

Girls on the Run is a nonprofit organization, based in Charlotte, N.C., that runs life-skills programs throughout the country for girls in the third through eighth grades. Each "season" of classes culminates in the running of a 5-kilometer running race. This May's event marked the seventh race for the Franklin County branch of the organization. For more information or to get involved, visit their website at girlsontherunfranklincountry.org.