Runners brave cold at 5th annual Ann Arbor marathon

- Whether fully dressed or showing off some skin, runners from all over the Midwest and beyond traveled to Ann Arbor on Sunday to compete in an annual marathon.

"There are a lot of serial marathoners ... Ann Arbor has a great reputation for a city. There is a marathon here and they want to add it to their marathon list," said Kathleen Schorin, a race volunteer.

More than 3,000 people attended the 5th annual Ann Arbor marathon -- the highest attendance in the race's history. Some runners completed the full 26.2 miles, while others ran the half marathon. The event also held 10K and 5K races.

"It's a lot of fun and it's running on into The Diag," runner Larry O'Sullivan said, referring to an area of The University of Michigan's campus. "You get to feel a sense of the history of the university."

For the first time, this year runners or walkers could take part in a virtual half marathon. About 20 people signed up to complete the 13 miles wherever they want and still get an Ann Arbor race T-shirt and medal like they were there.

"I've done a couple marathons, half marathons, but just had a baby so it's my first race back, so I'm excited," runner Mandy Earl-Canton said.

Huron Valley Ambulance had more than two dozen workers at the event. Many were placed strategically along the race route, ready to help immediately in case of emergencies. With temperatures hovering in the 20s and concerns about possible black ice, anything was possible Sunday.

Roger Simpson of Huron Valley Ambulance said emergency workers look out for winter problems in lower temperatures, such as hypothermia.

"Runners usually stay warm but once they stop running, they start getting cold fast," he said.

Luckily there were no serious setbacks on Sunday, but people getting healthy while helping local charities at the same time.


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