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ON YOUR MARK, GET SET … COVENANT HEALTH KNOXVILLE MARATHON READY FOR RECORD-BREAKING YEAR
March 18, 2015
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Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon
The Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon race weekend is set for Saturday and Sunday, March 28-29, and the 11th annual event marks the impressive beginning of another decade for the largest competitive road race in East Tennessee.
The Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon includes five race events: 26.2-mile marathon for runners and handcyclists; 13.1-mile half marathon; 3.1-mile 5K run; four-person and two-person marathon relays; and one-mile Covenant Kids Run.
“The Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon is a tremendous event for the city – both for our personal health and the health of our economy,” Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero said. “Runners and their families travel from all over the Southeast, across the country and even around the world to come to Knoxville, Tennessee.
“It’s a wonderful opportunity to encourage our citizens and many others to take steps toward healthy, active lifestyles, and it’s also an exciting chance to show what a vibrant, desirable and hospitable city Knoxville truly is.”
Since the first marathon race in Knoxville in 2005, the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon has grown in size and impact. The weekend of events for children, adults and people with disabilities promotes health and fitness, while also raising funds that benefit outstanding nonprofit programs, including Covenant Health’s Innovative Recreation Cooperative at Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center.
This year, race officials are expecting more than 8,000 participants in the various race events – another record-breaking registration figure for the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon.
“The success of this event is owed largely to the volunteers who participate each year,” said Jason Altman, executive director, Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon. “The race weekend gets better every year because we’re fortunate enough to be part of a community that cares about an improved quality of life for their families and their neighbors.
“The Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon is a shining example of why we’re The Volunteer State.”
The races begin on the Clinch Avenue Bridge, where spectators easily can watch friends and families take off from the start line. The route continues throughout many notable Knoxville neighborhoods and ends on the 50-yard-line of Neyland Stadium at the University of Tennessee. As they cross the finish line, runners can watch themselves on the stadium’s Jumbotron.
“We sponsor and support Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon not only as a premier running event in our region, but also as a premier event for Knoxville that our community is proud to host,” said Tony Spezia, president and CEO of Covenant Health. “As the largest health system in East Tennessee, Covenant Health is committed to improving the quality of life in our region through better health.”
Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon Events and Information
Online registration closes March 23. After web registration closes, registration for all events, including the Covenant Kids Run, is available only at the Knoxville Convention & Exhibition Center on Saturday, March 28, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. for the Kids Run and until 8 p.m. for the other races (except for the two- and four-person marathon relays), space permitting.
Start Times & Course
The races begin on the Clinch Avenue Bridge and will end on the field at Neyland Stadium. On Sunday, March 29, wheelchair and handcycle races start at 7:25 a.m.; marathon, half-marathon and relay races start at 7:30 a.m.; and the 5K starts at 7:45 a.m. The course winds through some of Knoxville’s finest neighborhoods and features 24 live music stations along the route.
Covenant Kids Run
The one-mile Covenant Kids Run starts Saturday, March 28, at 6 p.m. on the Clinch Avenue Bridge, overlooking the World’s Fair Park. The Kids Run also finishes on the 50-yard-line in Neyland Stadium.
Health & Fitness Expo
The Health & Fitness Expo will be held Saturday, March 28, from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. in Exhibit Halls 1 and 2 of the Knoxville Convention & Exhibition Center. Participants must attend to pick up their race day packets. The expo is open to the general public.
Pre-Race Pasta Dinner
Girls on the Run Knoxville will host the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon’s Pre-Race Pasta Dinner on Saturday, March 28, from 7-9 p.m. at the Holiday Inn World’s Fair Park. In addition to enjoying an Italian buffet-style dinner, guests will hear from motivational speaker Sterling Henton, the official DJ for the University of Tennessee. “Sterl the Pearl” will share his personal revelations about health and overcoming obstacles. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under, and proceeds go toward scholarships for Girls on the Run participants. To register, please visit www.gotrknoxville.org.
Post-Race Party & Awards
The Pilot Flying J post-race party will be held at Neyland Stadium outside Gate 21 immediately following the races. The award ceremony for the 5K will be held at 10 a.m.; awards for the half-marathon will be presented at 11 a.m.; and awards for the relays and marathon will be announced at 12:30 p.m. Cash prizes are awarded to the top finishers in the marathon, marathon wheelchair division, marathon handcycle division and half-marathon races.
Street and lane closures will occur throughout the center city and surrounding areas during race weekend, March 28-29. All streets are expected to be open by 2:30 p.m. Sunday. For more information and a complete course overview, please visit www.knoxvillemarathon.com.
Fans and Spectators Viewing
Friends and family are encouraged to cheer for runners anywhere along the course, from the starting point on Clinch Avenue Bridge to the finish line in Neyland Stadium. Fans are invited to support runners crossing the finish line by entering Neyland Stadium through Gate 21.
Post-race Injury Clinics
Covenant Therapy Centers will offer free post-race Injury Clinics for runners who develop aches, pains, blisters, sprains or other medical concerns. Appointments are not required, and participants must simply bring a photo ID and their bib number to one of the clinic locations during the times specified below. For more information and directions, call 865-541-4500 or visit www.covenanthealth.com/therapycenters.
Tuesday, March 31, from 7:30-10 a.m., at Fort Loudoun Therapy Center
Tuesday, March 31, from 3-5:30 p.m., at Parkwest Therapy Center
Tuesday, March 31, from 4-6 p.m., at Fort Sanders Therapy Center Downtown
Proceeds from the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon benefit both the Knoxville Track Club and the Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center Innovative Recreation Cooperative, which encourages people with disabilities to pursue leisure and sports activities. In 2014, Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon introduced the Community Contribution Program, which utilizes marathon proceeds to award community grant funding to three local programs working to make East Tennessee a healthier place to live. 2015 grant applications will be posted online in April.
For more information, visit www.knoxvillemarathon.com or call 865-684-4294.
About Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon
The Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon is a premier event organized by the Knoxville Track Club, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to the encouragement of physical well being through running, jogging, competitive road racing, race-walking, fun runs, cross-country and track and field.