Thousands of runners, family and friends come out to kick-off series

Akron, Ohio (June 25, 2016) – The sun was shining bright and rising temperatures greeted the 2,388 runners gathered on Union Street to compete in the Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series on Saturday morning. The competitors competed in either the National Interstate 8k or 1 mile race, and had the opportunity to enjoy both craft beer and root beer at the Finisher Festival. Out of today’s participants, nearly 60 percent of them are registered for all of the Akron Children’s Akron Marathon Race Series events.
“We are extremely pleased with the way the race went today and our participants should be very proud of their accomplishments,” said Anne Bitong, Akron Marathon President/Executive Director. “We hope the enthusiasm continues to grow as we get closer to the Goodyear Half Marathon & 10k in August. Everyone has worked hard to ensure this race series provides a world-class experience and training program for the running community.”

The top 8k men’s open finisher was Aiman Scullion with a time of 26:22, and the top women’s open finisher in the 8k, Becki Spellman, crossed the finish line in 29:56. In the master’s 8k competition Timothy Lewis came in with a time of 30:42, and the women’s master top finisher, Teresa Ferguson, had a time of 34:33.

“This event is a true community partnership, and it’s been a pleasure to work with so many great people at the Akron Marathon and National Interstate Insurance who are devoted to helping the people in our region lead healthy, active lives,” said President & CEO of Akron Children’s Bill Considine.

Top 1-mile runners of the day included the men’s open winner, Charles Novak, with a time of 4:50, and the women’s open winner, Faye Hellman, with a time of 5:34. In the masters competition, David Shull came in first with a time of 5:43, and Amanda Richardson came in with a time of 7:19.

The Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series also welcomed Joe Booth, who entered the 8k as a wheelchair racer. He crossed the finish line with a time of 1:01:42.

“It’s truly an honor and privilege for National Interstate to partner with Akron Children’s Hospital and Akron Marathon Charitable Corporation,” said President & CEO Of National Interstate Insurance Tony Mercurio. “I am also extremely proud to be a corporate citizen of a such a great community.”

The remaining 2016 race dates are as follows: Aug. 13 (Goodyear Half Marathon & 10k) and Sept. 24 (FirstEnergy Akron Marathon, Half Marathon, Team Relay). The dates coordinate with a typical training schedule to help runners reach bigger goals and longer distances. Registration for all Akron Marathon Race Series events is available at