After two-and-a-half years of cancellations and restrictions, Calgary’s biggest marathon hit the city streets on Sunday, despite its small number, which was just as bad as the pre-epidemic itself.
About 6,300 people ran, walked and wheeled through Stompede Park during the six distance events of the Service Calgary Marathon.
This is half the number of regular participants, but organizers say the recovery from the epidemic is a change that will be made slowly and steadily.
“We’m still excited to see everyone’s faces,” said Kirsten Fleming, managing director of Run Calgary. “Last time we were in the mask, so it’s very special to see their expressions as people cross the finish line.”
After the cancellation of 2020, the 2021 edition of the event was reduced and social distance protocols were implemented.
It also introduced a virtual element – which still exists at this time.
Officials say there will be nearly 1,000 virtual participants in the 2022 Marathon online event, which runs from May 29 to June 28.
Locals leg out
Lethbridge rider Kip Congo won the men’s marathon on Sunday in two hours and 32 minutes, an unofficial time.
Scott Cooper of Calgary ran the 50 kilometers of the ultra marathon in three hours and seven minutes.
Local Matthew Travaglini won the prize for the half marathon after winning the course in one hour and nine minutes.
“I feel at home,” Congo told CTV News. “It’s nice to run in person once again. (Curriculum) Very scenic. You can see the city, you can meet people, they can meet you. It’s a good spirit.”
This year Runners & Walkers has raised $ 300,000 for 73 different charities. Organizers expect it to be raised to $ 400,000 by the end of June.
In its 12-year fundraising history, the marathon has grossed more than $ 9 million.
For more information on fundraising, visit CalgaryMarathon.com.