Running a half marathon is not normally associated with family-oriented events. But then again, most running events aren’t held on Mother’s Day.
Nearly 2,500 people, most being athletes, many families and a lot of mothers and their children, took part in the fifth annual Kirkland Half Marathon presented by Kirkland business Everyday Athlete on Sunday.
“When we started this a lot of people said we were crazy to have it on Mother’s Day,” said event organizer Brian Oster. “But it has grown every year and become a real family thing.”
A sunny morning helped to bring out local families like the Christensens of Kirkland who participated in the 5K run.
“It is a really fun family activity,” said Alexis Christensen, who was accompanied by her husband Bill and two sons, Toren, 3, and Finn, 1. “This is the second year we have done this and it is nice that it is close by. I love doing Kirkland events.”
In an effort to bring out more competitive runners this year, organizers included a $1,000 prize for the first male and female Half Marathon runners that crossed the finish line.
“We want to keep bringing out more people and keep this competitive,” said Oster.
The first male across the line for the Half Marathon was Mark Mandi, with a time of 1:09:53, and the first woman was Trisha Steidl with a time of 1:23:09.
Prizes were also given out for the top three placing in each age and gender group.
The female winner of the 5K run is from Kirkland this year. Wyomia Bonewits came across the finish line with some breath to spare.
“This is a good training run,” said Bonewits. “There were some local girls that were not here today but it was fun to race.”
Bonewits said that she likes the fact that the event takes place on Mother’s Day.
“It is nice for the women,” said Bonewits, who finished in a time of 18:45. “They ran out of pink shirts, which is a good sign.”
Dave Davis was the overall winner with a time of 15:38, nearly three minutes faster than another runner.
Other events during the morning included a Kids’ Dash and Half Marathon and 5K runs, along with food and music.
Len Fedore, who owns Everyday Athlete that is located in Juanita Villiage, was on hand to help out.
“We always want to promote fitness and get people active in the community,” said Fedore. “This is the second year we have sponsored and it is just nice to have great weather. I think we got lucky.”