Get out your running shoes, there's still some time to train for the 2013 Shawnee Marathon Half.Full Distances which will be held on Oct. 26.
This year there will be a full marathon, a half marathon, a full marathon relay and a half marathon relay. Winners of all categories will receive $250. That includes categories for both male and female entrants, eight categories in all.
The races begin and end at Southeastern Illinois College's parking lot.
The full marathons start at 7:30 a.m., the half marathons start at 7:45 a.m.
Two entrants from the Harrisburg area will be Dean West of West Financial Services and Dr. Larry Jones, a family doctor from town.
"Our running trail here in Harrisburg is a great asset to the area," said Jones. West said, "It is nice running with no fear of cars."
Jones said, "I have run in seven marathons: Las Vegas, Nashville, Chicago twice, Indianapolis, Boston and New York City. My daughter ran with me in New York."
West ran his first marathon in 1981 and has run a total of 10 of the 26.2 mile races in his career. He has run New York City five times, Chicago four times, and the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington D.C. one time.
Race Director Rebecca Wyatt Nevitt said, "Howard Stearns is being awarded the first annual 'Chief' title for all his contributions to running in the Harrisburg area."
Information on sponsorships and registration is available at the website www.shawneemarathon.com. There is a Facebook page at the address www.facebook.com/ShawneeMarathonHalfFullDistances
"The proceeds go to a fund established to build an indoor pool here in Harrisburg for public use," Nevitt said.
The word has spread far and wide.
"So far we have entrants from Arkansas, New York, Chicago, Nashville, and Indiana," she said.
All entrants will receive a long sleeve Nike running shirt and a backpack goodie bag.
All races begin at Southeastern Illinois College and — depending on the length — incorporate College Road, Pebble Road, Berry Road, Rocky Branch Road, Horseshoe Road, Forest Road, roads around Glen O. Jones Lake in the Saline County Fish and Wildlife Area and a loop around Equality and back.