Excitement and Preparations Build for One of the Area’s Biggest Annual Events of the Year

AKRON, Ohio (September 13, 2018) – The Akron Marathon Charitable Corporation is pleased to announce that FirstEnergy will remain as presenting sponsor for their marquee event – The FirstEnergy Akron Marathon, Half Marathon & Team Relay – through the next three years. The last race in the Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series is the culmination of a summer of running for many area distance runners and will be held on Saturday, Sept. 29.

This year’s race roster is filled with first time and veteran runners, elite athletes from across the county, and 28 members of the Founder’s Club, running their 16th Akron Marathon. More than 10,000 are expected to participate and will feature runners from 44 states and six countries from ages 11 to 91.

“Akronites and city visitors alike see the blue line weave throughout the city all year long, a reminder of one of the preeminent events that showcase our city, both to the running community and also the world. Our employees have been volunteering and running in this race for years. It’s an event that has truly galvanized our company and our community,” said Charles Jones, president and chief executive officer of FirstEnergy Corp.

The entire Akron community is invited to cheer on runners along the course, with more than 100,000 spectators lining the streets each year. There will be entertainment throughout the 26.2-mile race course including 13 live bands and DJs, and over a dozen block parties organized by Akron residents celebrating their neighborhoods and welcoming runners. Seventeen fluid stations and three gel stations will be manned by energetic Summit County businesses and community organizations. Known for their world-class experience and finisher festivals, runners will complete their blue line journey inside Canal Park Stadium and celebrate with live entertainment, food, and award ceremonies.

Akron Children’s Hospital, the title beneficiary of the Akron Marathon Race Series, has selected 16 Hero Patients to provide inspiration for all runners as they travel the blue line. The patients will be featured at sponsored “hero zones” along the route. Heroes will be hosted by various sponsors and accompanied by their parents, siblings and, in some cases, classmates, medical providers, and friends at their zones.

The weekend’s festivities kick off with Deena Kastor, three-time Olympic marathoner and renowned American distance runner, being awarded the 2018 Ambassador Award on Thursday, Sept. 27. She will also meet runners, sign autographs, and copies of her new book at the Akron Marathon Health and Fitness Expo presented by Summa Health and SummaCare held at the John S. Knight Center on Friday, Sept. 28. Kastor will be the keynote speaker for the Akron
Marathon pasta party, also held on Friday from 5 to 8 p.m. during packet-pickup. Friday evening the fun continues for younger runners with the Kids Fun Run presented by Signet Jewelers. This event is a free, non-competitive one-mile fun run for children 12 and younger.

All events are filling up quickly with over 90 percent of the available spots already filled. The first two races in the series, the National Interstate 8k & 1-Mile held in June and August’s Goodyear Half Marathon & 10k, sold out. To register to run or volunteer for the last race in the series visit www.akronmarathon.org.

About the Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series

The Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series is organized by the Akron Marathon Charitable Corporation, a non-profit group founded in 2002 to provide a world-class marathon and other events that promote health and fitness, stimulate the local economy, galvanize the community and benefit charitable organizations. The series features race dates in June (National Interstate 8k & 1-Mile) and August (Goodyear Half Marathon & 10k), culminating with the 16th running of the FirstEnergy Full Akron Marathon, Half Marathon, Team Relay & Kids Fun Run in September. Additional information is available at AkronMarathon.org or by calling (330) 434-2RUN (2786).

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Media Contacts:
Toni Fink
Knox Marketing
440-785-4514 finkt@knoxmarketing.com