Four-time Boston Marathon winner will be in Akron next weekend

AKRON, Ohio (June 18, 2015) – Bill Rodgers, a four-time winner of the Boston and New York City marathons, will be on hand to help celebrate the start of the inaugural Akron Marathon Rubber City Race Series. Rodgers will wear honorary bib #1 at the Thirsty Dog 8k & 1-mile event on Saturday, June 27, and will participate in the 8k.

Rodgers twice held the American record in the marathon (1975 & ’78), and was the 2009 recipient of the Akron Marathon Ambassador Award. He is a member of the National Track & Field and the National Distance Running halls of fame, and was a member of the 1976 U.S. Olympic marathon team. Rodgers is a two-time Road Runners Club of America Masters Runner of the Year and has won numerous awards in the running industry.

“Bill has always been a friend of the Akron Marathon and we’re thrilled that he canbe on hand for the start of the Rubber City Race Series,” said Anne Bitong, Akron Marathon President/Executive Director. “It will also be great for our participants to say they ran in the same race as arguably one of the greatest marathoners of all time.”

Rodgers will be involved in activities throughout race weekend, including packet pick-up the day before the race (Friday, June 26). Participants who have signed up for the entire series will have the ability to attend an exclusive meet and greet with him that evening.

The Thirsty Dog 8k & 1-mile will start and finish at The University of Akron’s InfoCision Stadium. Participants of the 8k will receive a short sleeve shirt, medal with built in beer opener, commemorative pint glass and entry to the Runners’ Circle with a tasting glass and five tasting tickets (valid for Thirsty Dog craft beer or root beer tastings). One-mile participants will receive a short sleeve shirt, commemorative root beer mug and an entry to the Runners’ Circle with a tasting glass and a ticket for a Thirsty Dog craft root beer.

Runners and spectators will also have the opportunity to buy additional beer tickets.

The 2015 race dates for the inaugural running of the Rubber City Race Series are as follows: June 27 (Thirsty Dog 8k & 1-mile), Aug. 15 (Goodyear Half Marathon & 10k) and Sept. 26 (Akron Marathon, Half Marathon, & Team Relay). The dates were developed to help guide runners through a typical training schedule.

Registration for all three Rubber City Race Series events opened in November with incentives geared toward running multiple events. The entry fee is $55 for the 8k and $25 for the 1-mile, with roughly 3,000 expected participants between the two events. Currently, the 8k is over 80 percent full. Registration 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).