A beautiful sunny and crisp autumn weekend provided a beautiful back drop for more than 2,800 participants in the many events across P.E.I. Marathon weekend.
As per usual our Kids Fox Trot run was bursting at the seams with more than 600 children taking to the track after warming up and meeting some mascots. Treat bags and medals were in store for all.
Sunday morning was cool to start, especially out at the North Shore, but thankfully Mother Nature loves P.E.I. Marathon weekend as much as we do and blessed us with light breezes and sunshine.
We started some 11 individual events, including everything from the full marathon run, corporate relay, half marathon run and walk, 16k run and walk, 10k run and walk, 5k run and walk as well as a two-kilometre wheelchair event.
It was, as usual, a very exciting finish line, watching those racing finish with onlookers cheering them on.
As the race committee, it is always very gratifying to see a year’s worth of work by many come together on race weekend.
The set-up crew were up in the middle of the night making sure the logistics of the race were properly set up, volunteer snacks were packed for those manning nutrition stops along the route. Water and Gatorade were poured and passed out by the hundreds of glasses, probably thousands.
Police and first responders were onsite to keep runners safe and to be prepared for those who might need a little help after crossing the finish line to recover. Photographers were busy trying to capture the special moments and the timing crew had their hands full keeping so many races straight. Names were announced at the finish line, one-by-one as participants crossed the line.
The results were quickly compiled and an awards ceremony held, massages were to be had for those sore and tired legs.
And when the last runner crossed the finish line, there was still hours of work to tear down the course and return downtown Charlottetown for the start of another week.
All this to say that there are thousands of thank yous we want to share. Thank you to the participants for choosing the P.E.I. Marathon weekend. Thank you to the spectators for cheering on the participants. Thank you to our sponsors for everything you do to help us put this weekend on. Thank you to our hundreds of volunteers for your time, attention and talents. And a special thank you to our race committee who work on this event all year long and will be preparing for next year's race weekend very soon.
Rest, recover and enjoy your accomplishments. See you next Oct. 16-18 for the 17th running of the Prince Edward Island Marathon weekend.
Cheryl Paynter is a longtime P.E.I. Marathon board member. She contributed regular columns leading into this year's marathon weekend.