Changes further enhance world-class runner experience

AKRON, Ohio (Sept. 10, 2015) – As the Sept. 26 date for the 13th running of the Akron Marathon, Half Marathon and Team Relay rapidly approaches, there are several changes to be aware of leading up to race weekend that will affect both participants and spectators alike.

“Every year we take a step back and review race weekend, factor in participant feedback and start working to make improvements for the next year,” said Anne Bitong, Akron Marathon President/Executive Director. “All of these changes were done with one purpose – to continue to enhance the world-class experience that our runners have come to expect from the Akron Marathon.”

Here are a few of the major items that are new for 2015:

Kids Fun Run
For the first time, the popular Kids Fun Run will be held Friday night (Sept. 25). The change will allow participants in Saturday’s events to attend the Health & Fitness Expo, watch their children compete in the 1-mile race and attend the pasta party. The 6:30 p.m. Kids Fun Run is free, and it starts and finishes at Lock 3 in downtown Akron.

Start Line & Course
The start line for Saturday’s marquee events is moving from Broadway Street to 217 High St. The new location under the skywalk allows for easier routing of the course and potential expansion in the future. A redesign of the course also brings new sections of Akron into play, including North Hill, Exchange Street, Merriman Road and Hardesty Park.

Relay Legs
The changes in the course led to a few tweaks to the popular Team Relay event. In addition to more consistent distances for the five legs, the exchange zones also have new locations (see parenthesis):

  • Leg 1 – 5.8 miles
  • Leg 2 – 5.7 miles (John S. Knight Center)
  • Leg 3 – 5.5 miles (Howe House)
  • Leg 4 – 3.6 miles (Firestone High School)
  • Leg 5 – 5.6 miles (Hardesty Park)

Ohio Prize Money
This year, prize money will be awarded to the top Ohio residents regardless of age, a first in the history of the race.

  • Men’s & Women’s First Place: $750
  • Men’s & Women’s Second Place: $500
  • Men’s & Women’s Third Place: $250

The inaugural Rubber City Race Series saw the Thirsty Dog 8k & 1-mile (June 27) and Goodyear Half Marathon & 10k (Aug. 15) both sell out their 3,000-participant caps. As of Wednesday (Sept. 9), the Full Marathon (83%), Half Marathon (86%) and Team Relay (72%) were all filling up fast. The Series dates were developed to help guide runners through a typical training schedule leading up to the marquee events.

Registration closes Sept. 13 for the Team Relay and Sept. 20 for the Full and Half Marathons, and is is available at

About the Akron Marathon Rubber City Race Series
The Akron Marathon Rubber City 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. This year will mark the 13th running of September’s marquee event (Full Marathon, Half Marathon, Team Relay & Kids Fun Run), which has grown by more than 300 percent since its inception in 2003. The Series will feature new race dates in June (8k & 1-Mile) and August (Half Marathon & 10k), providing greater opportunity for participation on all levels in the sport of running. Additional information on the Series is available at or by calling (330) 434-2RUN (2786).