New York’s historic South Street Seaport area got the attention it needed when 14,500 runners, along with spectators and volunteers, descended upon the neighborhood today. This Saint Patrick’s Day, Lower Manhattan was filled with the faces of the NYC Half: Racers and fans who lined the city streets to celebrate fitness, recovery, and community.
The official Saint Patrick’s Day parade took place on Fifth Avenue a day early, but the weekend’s fastest parade was the NYC Half—run on the day when New Yorkers of all backgrounds turn a little bit Irish. Spectators bundled up in green—or, in the case of the Mercury Masters, purple—to come out and holler for friends, loved ones, teammates, and total strangers.
For many Saint Patrick’s Day revelers, Saturday, March 16, was an all-day party. But for the 14,500 athletes competing in the NYC Half 2013, the celebration would have to wait until after the Sunday- morning race.
As New York−area runners lined up in Central Park, shivering and stomping their feet alongside athletes from around the world, they felt a special excitement: This was their city, their training ground, and for many, their first major NYRR race since the 2012 ING New York City Marathon was cancelled last November.
Visitors to the “bib wall” area at this year’s NYC Half Expo were treated to a wide range of fill-in-the-blank responses to the statement “I run…” Answers varied—from heartfelt tributes to lighter, comedic responses. And in keeping with that variety, some 15,000 entrants stepped to the starting line on race day with their own personal reasons to take on the half-marathon distance.
The day after the snow-drenched Saint Patrick’s Day Parade, NYC Half finishers and their friends and families were delighted to soak up sun and atmosphere at the Post-Race Festival Presented by United Airlines.
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