What runners and spectators can expect during the Omaha marathon

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 8:01 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Runners are trained and ready to hit the road on Sunday for the 2020 Omaha Marathon.

“I wanted it to happen because running a marathon is a personal goal for me,” runner Kim Blew said.

Just days after his 41st birthday, he’ll be running the half marathon for the 4th time, all while dealing with a handful of health issues.

“I have a whole lot of struggles holding me back trying to keep me from being the runner I want to be, but I’m going to fight those struggles and keep going through,” Blew said.

Being more at risk, he’s thankful for the health measures put in place.

Organizers worked with the Douglas County Health Department and will be requiring runners to wear masks until they start running. Athletes will start in waves to encourage social distancing on the course.

“Just to go out there an be able to compete with other runners is going to be a high no matter how it is,” Runner Craig Halverson said.

Halverson will be a seventh-time runner on Sunday. He’s happily following rules put in place but said he will miss the spectators this year who are being asked to stay home. Those who want to cheer on runners are being asked to only be at Miller Park, at the marathon turn around at 14th and Izard, or on 16th St. just west of the stadium.

“You know it’s nice when people are there cheering us on, people have friends and families that want to watch but you got to do it. You have to find a way,” Halverson said.

Runners can still expect water stations during the run and awards after — but no award ceremony. With the addition of masks and gloves on volunteers and temperature checks for runners, they anticipate having a smooth and healthy day.

“We think between the safety protocols, the numbers, and mask-wearing requirement, we have a great opportunity."

Organizers said it’s been months in the making to get runners from around the country back on their feet.

The Saturday expo is also still a go. It’s open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; friends and family are welcome to attend with their runner.

Copyright 2020 WOWT. All rights reserved.

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