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home > news > usa: mid_atlantic > the philadelphia marathon expands rothman 8k with inaugural group challenge

The Philadelphia Marathon Expands Rothman 8K with Inaugural Group Challenge
Team competition offers group entry discount as well as awards and prizes in race and creative categories

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Posted Monday, 15 October, 2012

PHILADELPHIA - (October 9, 2012) - Philadelphia Marathon organizers have announced exciting changes to the Rothman Institute 8K. The 8K race, which is on Saturday, Nov. 17 beginning at 22nd Street and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, will include an addition to enhance the race experience.

New to the race will be the Rothman Institute 8K Group Challenge - a competition among hotels, gyms, running clubs, businesses, nonprofit organizations, universities and colleges to decide which group (five or more race participants) can claim bragging rights as the best running team. Groups can win awards and prizes in both competitive and creative categories such as the fastest group, best group spirit, best dressed group, and more. Group race participants will receive a runner's bib, t-shirt, post-race food and take part in a photo opportunity.

"The new 8K Group Challenge fosters team competition and camaraderie by connecting many organizations that make Philadelphia an amazing place to live, visit and have fun experiences," said Melanie Johnson, Executive Director of the Philadelphia Marathon. "The Rothman Institute offers a terrific way for competitors to get involved with Philadelphia Marathon Weekend. It is a manageable distance and is less demanding when training. It also gives our runners great choices. From serious to friendly competition, there is something that appeals to all runners' tastes."

The new group format offers another running option to fit all competitors' preferences, complementing a solid lineup of competitive races including the full marathon (26.2 miles), half-marathon (13.1 miles) and the individual competition of the Rothman Institute 8K (nearly 5 miles). The 8K is held Saturday, Nov. 17 preceding Sunday's Philadelphia Marathon and Half Marathon.

Taking part in the 8K Group Challenge is easy:

  • Sign up a group (five or more race participants) and receive $10 off each registration.
  • E-mail Michelle Freeman, Business & Community Outreach for the Philadelphia Marathon, at
  • Receive a promo code and registration instructions for you and your group members.
  • Recruit your group and have each member register with your group's own promo code by Thursday, November 1, 2012.
  • Receive confirmation details from the Philadelphia Marathon.

The Philadelphia Marathon and Half Marathon are both sold-out, while the still-open Rothman Institute 8K presents a great opportunity to compete in Philadelphia Marathon Weekend fun. The highly competitive race consistently draws runners of all levels - from beginners to elite competitors. Sheila Reid, a 2012 Olympian and Villanova University graduate, who will participate in the 8K, said it is challenging but less strenuous than long-distance races.

"The Rothman Institute 8K also is an amazing event to join because the course is beautiful and the relatively flat surface makes running a complete joy," said Reid. "I always feel welcomed in Philadelphia. The event is a great experience for anyone looking to run a challenging distance that's not overwhelming."

Over the years the Rothman 8K has been a springboard for many great future marathoners who got their "feet wet" in the waters of short-distance running. Many runners return to the race each year, and it has grown steadily, emerging as a key race on the Mid-Atlantic USA Track & Field Association circuit.

The Rothman Institute 8K begins along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, near the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The scenic route takes runners through the beautiful banks of the Schuylkill River and Kelly Drive. At 4.97 miles, the race represents a manageable distance for those being introduced to distance running and the ideal route for more experienced runners.

Registration for the Rothman Institute 8K costs $45 for individuals and $35 for Group Challenge members. The deadline to register is Thursday, Nov. 1 or before registration reaches capacity; go to:

More than 27,000 runners and 60,000-plus spectators will experience "The Best Time of Your Life" during Marathon Weekend (Friday, November 16 to Sunday, November 18). In addition to Sunday's Philadelphia Marathon, Race Weekend features three races - the Half-Marathon, the Rothman Institute 8K and the Kids Fun Run. Other activities to welcome runners, families, friends, volunteers, spectators businesses, visitors and residents include a free two-day Health & Fitness Expo; a free course map complete with retail discounts and promotions, and information on more than 20 spectacular cheer zones. Race participants pass many of Philadelphia's famous attractions on the swift and scenic USATF-certified course, a Boston Marathon qualifier.



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