Lincoln Marathon and Half-Marathon
Sunday, May 2 - 7AM
Soon, the streets of Lincoln will be packed with runners, as Lincoln's 33rd Annual Half and Full Marathon makes its way through town.
For 32 years, hundreds of runners have made their way down Capital City streets, one foot in front of the other, for the Lincoln Marathon.
The popularity of the course continues to grow each year, involving thousands of runners.
The race began on a much smaller scale, with only 375 people taking part the first year.
"Some people had gone up to a race in Minnesota, and decided if Minnesota could do it, so could Nebraska. So, they came back here, plotted this course out on a map, that they put up in somebody's living room, and from there, it became the Lincoln Marathon," said Nancy Sutton, Marathon Director.
This year, the race includes participants from all 50 states, as well as runners from Guam, The Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.
"People are so amazed when they come here. They're expecting to see tractors and cows and pigs, and when they actually see that we have a city, they are amazed," said Sutton.
The now city-wide course used to make its way around Air-Park near the airport.
Since the first year, routes have changed, and so have the numbers.
"We never thought in 1 million years we would get to 5,000, and now, here we are at 8,000, and next year, hopefully, it will be 10,000. Who knows where we'll go. For Lincoln, Nebraska to have a marathon and half-marathon of 8,000, that's pretty exciting for us," said Sutton.
Especially because the course is not too bad when compared to others around the country.
"We have a fairly flat course, so, people tend to like that too. They like going through the different parts of the city, so, it's kind of an interesting course," said Sutton.
This year, history-in-the-making continues for the marathon, as the finish line becomes a dream-come-true for marathon organizers and runners alike.
"It's exciting for us to have moved the finish line to the stadium. That' been a goal of ours for many years. Now, it will be on the 50-yard-line, and we're going to use the bigscreens, so, when you enter into the stadium, you'll be able to see your picture up on the bigscreen. It gives me goosebumps, because how often would you be able to see your picture up there?" said Sutton.