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Friday, 06 February 2009 12:21

Clearwater Halfathon and 5 Miler

Written by  Heidi Elizabeth Lux
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Photo by Ian Phoenix
Photo by Ian Phoenix

Clearwater, FL (January 2009) - It was a chilly Sunday morning, just as dawn was starting to break and the runners were out bright and early in their hopes of being the first to complete the fourth annual Clearwater Half-a-Thon and third annual Five Mile Races, but the un-Floridian like temperature didn’t stop a flock of racers from warming up in preparation to cross the Clearwater Memorial Bridge.

Just as the sun poked its sleepy head over the bay, the runners lined up at the starting line at Coachman Park, stretching, jogging lightly in the parking lot or doing the “cold weather dance” as they waited in anticipation for the race to start.

“It’s going to be a good run across the bridge,” said Mike Newton, a participant. For him, the race is an enjoyable way to get his exercise. “This is fun. It’s a good way to start the New Year off.”

The runners, some displaying their toned and athletic legs in seasonably inappropriate shorts, inched towards the starting line as encouraging words came over the loudspeaker, “Put your hands together for yourself. Everybody is a winner here.”

The air horn went off at 7:05am, jolting the participants into action. The flock of runners crossed the starting line, took a curve up Drew Street, and headed out towards the Clearwater Memorial Bridge.

The race led the runners through a scenic course taking them over Clearwater Memorial Causeway, onto Clearwater Beach, over Clearwater Pass Bridge, through Sand Key Park and out on Gulf Boulevard. It was then back again to the finish line in Coachman Park. The picturesque sunrise and spectacular view of the gulf was a unique incentive for runners to tackle the race.

At around 7:45, Jeremy Vizzi was the first to come back for the Five Mile Race, and an hour later, Josh Wolfe came in first for the Half-A-Thon. Second place winner, fourteen year old Zach Maciolek says of the race, “It was a nice run…coming over the bridge was pretty hard.”

Participants were treated to music, back massages and a complimentary post-run meal of pasta, Fig Newtons, fruit and Power Bars.

- Tampa Bay Informer
The Good News Newspaper

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Read 1169 times Last modified on Monday, 09 February 2009 09:59