Steamtown Marathon 2009 Chugs into Town

Downtown — By on September 25, 2009 at 10:41 am

The leaves are changing, weather is getting cooler, and school is back in session. For those of you who pound the pavement in search of a rewarding fitness experience, it can only mean one thing – the Steamtown Marathon is back.

For the 14th straight season, runners from around Northeast Pennsylvania and the East Coast will converge on the Electric City on Sunday, October 11, for Scranton’s own marathon. Billing itself as an event “organized by runners, for runners,” the marathon has been named one of the 10 fastest marathon courses in the United States Runner’s World magazine.

This year the marathon has gone social, reaching out to runners and fans through its Facebook page, Twitter page and its online community, assembled by race organizers, that includes a collection of blogs and a runners’ forum.

But the Steamtown Marathon has always been “social” in the most conventional sense. The support given to the participants from fans, spectators, and local residents makes the event truly unique. Beginning with greetings from the Forest City High School band and cheerleaders at the start, spectators of all ages line the marathon route to cheer on everyone taking part in the action. To get a sense of the fans’ view of things, browse the collections of Steamtown Marathon photography available on Flickr and Picasa.

Starting at Forest City High School at 8 a.m., the 26.2-mile marathon course winds through small towns and boroughs, while also incorporating several miles worth of scenic trails along the Lackawanna River, before ending at Courthouse Square in downtown Scranton. As marathon specifics go, the course features a number of downhill sections at the start, before flattening out for much of the remaining stretch. The fast nature of the course makes it popular for runners looking to set a personal best time, as well as for making a time to qualify for the Boston Marathon.

For an inside look at what goes into training for this grueling race, we’ve provided links to the training blogs of some runners chronicling their experiences as they prepare for the Steamtown Marathon:

5crazygreys – Steamtown will be the runner’s first marathon.

My 4 Hour Marathon

Ultra Running Building Endurance

Fitness For Sports

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