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Although the Mill Race Marathon is a major sporting event for experienced runners, the weekend of activities also includes plenty of opportunities for young runners. They can get a taste for what it’s like to be a competitive athlete or just how much fun it is to run hard and fast.
Runners must be at least age 13 to run in the half-marathon and age 10 to run in the 5K, but younger children may participate in the Kids Fun Run.
The evening before the main event, up to 1,000 children from about ages 4 to 11 will be running as fast their legs will take them around downtown’s Mill Race Park.
From the beginning, marathon organizers said they wanted to encourage everyone to think about becoming more fit and developing a more healthy lifestyle.
To encourage more students to participate in the 5K and Kids Fun Run, Columbus-based SIHO Insurance Services and Reach Healthy Communities are offering prizes for schools that have the highest percentage of student participation.
“SIHO very often looks for opportunities to associate with events that are health- and fitness-related, especially if we can be involved with families and children,” said Marc Rothart, SIHO’s chief financial officer.
Signup is available at millracemarathon.com.
Half-marathon not for you? Try the 5K
WHAT: 5-kilometer (3.1-mile) running and walking event open to everyone, but special middle and high school division available to encourage youth participation.
SPONSOR: SIHO Insurance Services
SCHOOL CHALLENGE: Schools with the highest student participation percentages will be awarded prizes from SIHO. $1,000 will be awarded to schools in Bartholomew, Brown, Decatur, Jackson and Jennings counties.
WHEN: Event starts at 9 a.m. Sept. 28 in downtown Columbus.
AWARDS: Overall winners for all participants regardless of age: First, $100; second, $75; third, $50. Age division awards also will be presented.
COST: $18. After Sept. 25, $25.
EVENT T-SHIRT: $12
REGISTER: Go to millracemarathon.com
Kids Fun Run
WHEN: Run starts at 6 p.m. Sept. 27, following warm-up beginning at 5:50 p.m.
WHERE: Mill Race Park, Fifth and Brown streets.
WHO: Pre-kindergarten through sixth grade, no matter what school they attend.
EVENTS: Divisions will be pre-kindergarten and kindergarten (0.5K), Grades 1 and 2 (1K), Grades 3 and 4 (1.5K) and Grades 5 and 6 (2K).
YOUTH AWARDS: All finishers will receive a participation medal.
SCHOOL AWARDS: An award certificate and prize gift certificate will be presented to the top three schools with the highest student participation percentages. Three $300 awards will go to Bartholomew County schools to be used for health equipment at the schools.
SPONSORS: MainSource Bank and Reach Healthy Communities.
EVENT T-SHIRT: Can be purchased for $5.
TO REGISTER: Go to millracemarathon.com. Pre-registration is strongly encouraged and closes Sept. 20. Late registration will be available at the Health and Fitness Expo on Sept. 26 and 27 at The Commons and from 4 to 5:15 p.m. before the race at the park.
PARKING: Free in Mill Race Park or in the Cummins Inc. lots adjacent to the park.
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