Lit­tle Rock Marathon al­ready chock-a-block

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - STYLE - Please send tips for ac­tive recre­ation to cbyrd@arkansason­line.com

CON­LEY BYRD III

Pre­sented by the Arkansas

Demo­crat-Gazette, the 15th an­nual Lit­tle Rock Marathon is this week­end.

Fundrais­ers for the Lit­tle Rock Parks and Recre­ation De­part­ment, the 5K and 10K be­gin at 7:30 a.m. Satur­day; the marathon and half-marathon start at 7 a.m. Sun­day.

The long races will start at the in­ter­sec­tion of Scott and Fourth streets in down­town Lit­tle Rock.

Bad news for any­one hop­ing to reg­is­ter last minute at the Health and Fit­ness Expo: Marathon di­rec­tors an­nounced Feb. 18 that all dis­tances (ex­cept the kids race) have sold out.

For cu­ri­ous, num­ber­minded folks, the 26.2-mile marathon had 2,500 spots; the 13.1-mile half marathon had 4,200; there were 1,600 en­tries avail­able for the 6.2-mile 10K, and the 3.1-mile 5K had 1,400 open­ings.

The in­au­gu­ral Lit­tle Rock Marathon on May 4, 2003, ad­mit­ted about 2,200 en­tries, count­ing all of its events, ac­cord­ing to Demo­crat Gazette ar­chives.

The cap on the num­ber of en­tries is de­cided by marathon or­ga­niz­ers based on in­dus­try trends “and the money we need to raise for Lit­tle Rock Parks & Rec,” co-or­ga­nizer Geneva Lamm says. Lamm and fel­low race man­ager Gina Pharis aim to in­crease the num­ber of en­tries by 10 per­cent each year.

The expo is still open to the pub­lic at no cost and packed to the gills with ex­hibitors. It will be at the State­house Con­ven­tion Cen­ter, 101 E. Markham St. in down­town Lit­tle Rock from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fri­day and 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Satur­day.

The marathon’s women’s record is 2:37:26 set by Leah Thorvil­son of Lit­tle Rock in 2012. The men’s record is 2:19:45 set by Mark Chep­ses of Des Moines, Iowa, in 2013.

For full course in­for­ma­tion and road clo­sures, visit lit­tle­rock­marathon.com.

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