Akron, OH (August 4, 2022) — The Akron Marathon Charitable Corporation has confirmed its running celebrities to help celebrate the 20th running of the FirstEnergy Akron Marathon, Half Marathon, and Team Relay at the Blue Jean Bash fundraiser on Thurs., Sept 22, 2022. Its running celebrities will also attend the Health & Fitness Expo set for Friday, Sept. 23, 2022.

This year’s running celebrities are Ali Feller, Meb Keflezighi, Bill Rodgers, and Kathrine Switzer.

Ali Feller is a blogger, freelance writer, editor, and host of the “Ali on the Run Show podcast.” In the podcast, Feller interviews runners about why they love the sport, how running makes them feel, and what they enjoy outside of running. The podcast is one of the top-running podcasts in the world and has more than 14.8 million downloads. Ali will be doing a live podcast from the Blue Line Celebration stage at the Health & Fitness Expo on Friday!

Meb Keflezighi is the first runner in history to win the New York Marathon, the Boston Marathon, and an Olympic Medal. Keflezighi spends his free time training, competing, making personal appearances, and overseeing the MEB (Maintaining Excellent Balance) Foundation which promotes young health, education, and fitness.*The Akron Marathon’s Ambassador Award Recipient in 2016.

Bill Rodgers is a four-time winner of the Boston and New York City marathons. Rodgers is also a member of the National Track & Field Hall of Fame, the National Distance Running Hall of Fame and is one of four American men to have medaled in the IAAF World Cross Country Championships, earning a bronze medal in 1975., *The Akron Marathon’s Ambassador Award Recipient in 2009.  

Kathrine Switzer is an athlete, activist, and author best known for challenging the all-male tradition of the Boston Marathon and becoming the first woman to officially enter and run the event. Switzer created programs in 27 countries for more than 1 million women that led to the inclusion of the women’s marathon as an official event in the Olympic Games. *The Akron Marathon’s Ambassador Award Recipient in 2008.

During the Blue Jean Bash, the John S. Knight Center will be transformed into a 20-year celebration, filled with interactive displays, running celebrities, live entertainment, and a walk down the history of the Blue Line. Honorary Chairs of the Blue Jean Bash include City of Akron Mayor Horrigan, Summit County Executive Shapiro, and Summa Health’s Dr. Shah.

The Blue Jean Bash will be the largest fundraiser for the Akron Marathon and hosted by Steve and Jeannine Marks, race co-founders, whose family also serves as the presenting sponsor.

Kick off race weekend with the Akron Marathon and celebrate 20 years along the Blue Line. Tickets and sponsorship to the Blue Jean Bash will help reach the Finish Line towards the organization’s $400,000 fundraising goal. For more information on tickets and sponsorships, please visit akronmarathon.org/bluejeanbash.