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The 2020 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon has been cancelled due to the pandemic

The 2020 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon and Half Marathon has been canceled.

The event, previously slated for October, joins several other races and festivals in the Columbus area that have been shelved, rescheduled or replanned to take place virtually because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“No one at the finish line last October could have anticipated that we would cancel the event for this year, but it is absolutely the correct thing to do,” Board Chairman Dan Leite said in a news release. “The safety of our athletes, volunteers, first responders, team and the entire community is the top priority for our event. “

The event has raised $10 million for Nationwide Children’s Hospital, the marathon’s benefiting charity, since 2012. 

“It pains us to not be able to bring our race forward in 2020, but these are no ordinary times,” Race Director Darris Blackford said in the release. “Everyone has faced changes to our ‘normal’ ways of life. When you think about the best health and safety practices needed to help slow the spread of the virus, holding a major running footrace isn’t the responsible thing to do right now.”

Race participants will have their fees refunded. However, would-be participants will still have a chance to fundraise for Children’s Hospital’s patients and families. There will be a forthcoming announcement on fundraising activities.

"This is the right decision and whole this news might disappoint in the short term, our 128-year-old mission is not taking a break,” Steve Testa, president of the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Foundation, said in the release.

“Kids still get cancer, babies are still born prematurely,” Testa said. “We look forward to working with everyone to help children.”

(06/30/2020) Views: 203 ⚡AMP
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Columbus Marathon

Columbus Marathon

The Nationwide Children's Hospital Columbus Marathon, first run in 1978 and held annually since 1980, features a flat, fast course which saw nearly 20 percent of finishers qualify for the Boston Marathon in 2010. The event has sold-out in mid-August the past eight years. There are 7,000 runners in the full marathon and 11,000 in the half marathon, making it...

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Mike Reynolds will run his 39th Columbus Marathon on Sunday

Mike Reynolds opens a scrap book full of his biggest running memories, including his race bib from the first Columbus Marathon in 1980.

“It cost $7 to enter,” Reynolds says. “And you had to finish to get your windbreaker.”

A lot has changed since 1980, including the entry fee (now $145) and runners getting their race swag in the days before the race at the Greater Columbus Convention Center.

As organizers plan to hold the 40th running of the marathon, which is set to start Sunday at 7:30 a.m., Reynolds will step to the starting line for the 39th time. He missed the 1983 race because of illness.

So what else has changed since those early days?

“We started at noon because we were concerned about the church crowd,” Reynolds says. Another big distinction between the early 80s and now is the addition of electronics and breathable fabrics.

“We were all wearing cotton and nylon,” Reynolds says.

“They bragged that were five water spots on the course.” Reynolds says, adding that runners didn’t get any snacks unless they brought them with them. There are 17 water stands now, many of them passing out energy bars and Powergel packets.

As far as changes he’d still like to see, Reynolds says he wishes organizers gave more recognition to people who’ve hit milestones, like participating in their fifth or 10th marathon.

His advice for people running their first marathon on Sunday?

“I always say get a friend. Find somebody else to run with,” Reynolds says. “If you’re very good, that’s a different situation, but if you’re a normal person, find somebody who’s a friend and share that situation with them.”

(10/18/2019) Views: 597 ⚡AMP
by Steve Brown
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Columbus Marathon

Columbus Marathon

The Nationwide Children's Hospital Columbus Marathon, first run in 1978 and held annually since 1980, features a flat, fast course which saw nearly 20 percent of finishers qualify for the Boston Marathon in 2010. The event has sold-out in mid-August the past eight years. There are 7,000 runners in the full marathon and 11,000 in the half marathon, making it...

more...
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Columbus Marathon Race Registration Opens February 1

Early registration remains at $75 for the marathon and $60 for the ½ marathon until Feb. 14. The first day of February marks the beginning of the shortest month of the year with spring in sight and the first day to register for the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon. Set for Sunday October 21, 2018, this will mark the 39th year for the marathon and the 13th year for the ½ Marathon. Runners and walkers can register for the event at www.columbusmarathon.com. (01/22/2018) Views: 808 ⚡AMP
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