Sunday's Fredericton Marathon rerouted
May 5th, 2011

Organizers of the 33rd annual Scotiabank Fredericton Marathon have modified their plans for Sunday's event.

Due to expected high water levels, many portions of the river trail system will be inaccessible due to flooding. so the course is being moved inland to Queen Square where it will start and finish on Aberdeen Street near the swimming pool and tennis courts.

Sarah Loftus and her father, Terry Haines, both members of the Capital City Roadrunners, will both compete in the 33rd annual Scotiabank Fredericton Marathon Sunday. The event is expected to draw more than 1200 runners from throughout the Maritimes.

All runners are asked to be at Queen Square for the 8 a.m. start of the Marathon and half marathon run/walk with all other events, including the 10 kilometre and five kilometre events, starting shortly thereafter. The 7 a.m. early start for those expecting to be slower than five hours still applies.

Weekend activities get underway on Saturday with a children's race beginning at 2 p.m. Registration for that race takes place from 12:45-1:30 p.m. at the Fredericton Convention Centre. The start/finish line is behind the Beaverbrook Art Gallery. Cost of entry is a toonie

Participants in Sunday's races, including the 5k, 10k, half marathon and full marathon, are asked to register and pick their race kit up Saturday at the Convention Centre between 2 and 7 p.m. to avoid delays at the venue site on Sunday morning. A race expo is also being held there. Runners who absolutely cannot make the Saturday pick-up can do so Sunday morning.

Participants are encouraged to visit for updates and information. The event is presented by the Capital City Road Runners.

The coordinator for the kid's races, Dianne Sharpe said the goal is to help attract more interest in the sport. It's also aimed at connecting with families by showing there is something for all ages to get some fresh air and enjoy themselves.

"It is non-competitive. We have fun one kilometre and three kilometre races in which kids 14-and-under and their parents can participate."

There will be drinks, food and medals for all participants, with the Irving Oil Kids LiveWell program helping sponsor the event. Elementary and middle Schools who have been participating in the Go for 42 program are encouraged to come and finish their marathon at this event.

"There were approximately 140 kids running last year and we are hoping to surpass that this year." Sharpe said.

The volunteer committee is not allowing rising water levels to deter what is shaping up to be another banner year. Numbers are expected to meet or exceed the 1,200 participants who competed in 2010. The 42.2 kilometre marathon, a certified qualifying race for the Boston Marathon, attracts runners from all across the region and eastern United States.

Paul Lavoie, who has been race director, for the past 15 years, credits a "fantastic committee" for making the event happen each year. Lavoie has run the Boston Marathon and still participates in triathlons. He won't compete Sunday because there is too much to do on race day.

"It has been very rewarding to watch this sport grow. 33 years ago there were not as many runners. This originally started with The Heart and Stroke Marathon, raising funds for that charity. Over the years we have changed to an event."

Available: Daily Gleaner, May 5, 2011