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2013 Chicago Marathon

2013 Bank of America Chicago Marathon takes place Sunday, October 13th.

45,000 runners and more than a million spectators are expected.

In the wake of the Boston Marathon Bombings last April, organizers are making security a top priority.

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40,000 runners hit the streets for this year’s Chicago Marathon.

One man in particular drew a crowd of 100 cheering supporters.

Maickel Melamed, 38, of Venezuela came last in the marathon – crossing the finish line just after 1:30 a.m. Monday.

That’s a time of 16 hours and 46 minutes.

Melamed was born with the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck, choking him, leaving him motionless and with permanent Motor Retardation.

His parents were told he would never walk, never talk and worse yet, he wouldn’t live past seven days.

But 38-years later, he speaks three different languages, has a degree in economics, has completed three marathons, climbs mountains and is a motivational speaker.

He says he hopes he can inspire others to live life to the fullest.

In an interview with WGN’s Tonya Francisco, Melamed said, “I am just a human being. If my life is useful for other people, I will feel happy because there is no more good but to be useful. But, I am a human being. Sharing their life with others.”

What’s next for Melamed? He says he plans to take on the Tokyo Marathon in February and the Boston Marathon in April.

A disabled man from Venezuela was the last to finish the Chicago Marathon at 1:30 a.m. Monday, and talked about why he did the race.

The cleanup is underway in Grant Park.

Several Security changes were in place for this year’s marathon and race officials say things went well.

More than 40,000 runners  hit the streets running through several of Chicago’s neighborhoods.

Pete Hanson of Seattle said “It was absolutely gorgeous, perfect course, perfect weather. Can’t ask for anything more than that.”

And huge crowds of spectators lined the route cheering the runners on.

Following the Boston Marathon bombing, security was increased for this year’s Chicago marathon.

Runners had to pick up their own race packets and put their belongings in clear plastic bags.  No backpacks were allowed.

And the finish line was not open to general spectators,  you had to have a wrist band.  Race officials say the changes were effective and things went well.

2013 chicago marathon

Carey Pinkowski, Executive Director of the Chicago Marathon said “It’s a testimony to what a marathon is about and the people. They’re dedicated, focused, and committed. Marathon is a celebration of humanity and this is an example of that.”

Daniel Schlich also ran this year’s Boston Marathon which prompted major changes for the Chicago race carried out under the watchful eyes of uniformed and undercover police.

Schlich, who is from Ohio, said “With all the extra safety precautions I felt pretty safe with it.”

The medical director for the race says 750 people required medical care, 26 were transported to hospitals, and none of them had critical injuries.

And for those who crossed the finish line, many limped on out of there, to get some beer, food, and well deserved rest!

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Dennis Kimetto of Kenya (left) wins the men’s elite division. Rita Jeptoo of Kenya (right) wins the women’s elite division. (Jose M. Osorio, Chicago Tribune)

By Tribune reporters: Jeremy Gorner, John Keilman, Geoff Ziezulewicz and Kim Geiger

While security was on the minds of many runners during their 26.2 mile journey through the city’s streets, runners didn’t let it stop them as the winning runners set a new course record in what has become a historic Chicago Marathon.

Dennis Kimetto of Kenya won the male division with an unofficial time of 2:03:45, breaking the previous record set last year of 2:04:38.

Rita Jeptoo of Kenya won the female division with an unofficial time of 2:19:59, slower than the 2002 course record of 2:17:18.

The winners of the wheelchair division finished the race in less than 2 hours. As a group of wheelchairs crossed the finish line a number of volunteers clapped and cheered.

Ernst Van Dyk of South Africa won the male wheelchair division with a time of 1:30:37 and the winner of the female wheelchair division, Tatyana McFadden of Champaign won with a time of 1:42:37.

For more on this story, go to ChicagoTribune.com

The 36th Chicago Marathon kicks off in Grant Park Sunday morning.

With the starting gun just minutes away, runners, officials and spectators are converging for what could be a historic Chicago Marathon.

At 5 a.m., a few dozen security guards from Monterrey Security began checking people into the Marathon grounds along the Jackson Boulevard bridge, just east of the course along Columbus Drive.

The guards searched bags at several tables set up in the middle of the bridge. A large sign affixed to the checkpoint detailed a list of items forbidden on the Marathon grounds:

*large backpacks
*suitcases and rolling bags
*costumes covering the face or any non-formfitting bulky outfits extending beyond the perimeter if the body
*props and non-running equipment
*bicycles
*pets/animals (except for service animals)

A few dozen volunteers were already scattered along Columbus between the start and finish lines, and about 40 uniformed Chicago police officers also walked around sporting neon yellow vests.

By Jeremy Gorner

Copyright © 2013 Chicago Tribune Company, LLC

The CTA will provide bus and rail service for participants and spectators heading to the Chicago Marathon on Sunday.

The marathon begins at 7:30 a.m. for all runners just north of Jackson on Columbus Drive, with the course winding through multiple city neighborhoods.

CTA recommends customers attending the marathon purchase 1-day or 3-day unlimited-ride visitor passes or fare cards in advance with enough value for their return trips later in the day. They also suggest allowing extra travel time.

RAIL SERVICE

Blue, Orange and Red Lines

Longer trains will operate on each rail line during marathon hours. More frequent service will operate on the Red Line.

Brown Line

Brown Line service into the Loop will begin earlier than normal, with the first train departing Kimball at 5 a.m., providing service to downtown.  Longer trains will operate during marathon hours.

Green Line

Green Line service will begin earlier than normal, with the first trains departing from Harlem/Lake at 5:30 a.m. and 63rd/Cottage Grove at 5:40 a.m.  Longer trains will operate during marathon hours.

Orange Line

Orange Line service will begin at its regular Sunday start time; however, longer trains will begin operation at 5:30 a.m. from Midway.

Purple Line

Purple Line service will begin earlier than normal, with the first train departing from Linden at 5:30 a.m., providing service to Howard where customers can transfer to the Red Line for service to downtown.

BUS SERVICE

On Sunday, CTA will provide earlier service on the #3 King Drive bus route. From 5:30 a.m. until approximately one hour after the event starts, #3 buses will operate every 15 minutes.

During the course of the race, there will be intermittent reroutes along several CTA bus routes.

CLICK HERE: CURRENT BUS REROUTES

The affected routes are:

#3 King Drive #56 Milwaukee
#4 Cottage Grove #60 Blue Island/26th
#6 Jackson Park Express #62 Archer
#8 Halsted #65 Grand
#9 Ashland #66 Chicago
#10 Museum of Science & Industry #70 Division
#12 Roosevelt #72 North
#J14 Jeffery Jump #73 Armitage
#18 16th/18th #74 Fullerton
#20 Madison #76 Diversey
#21 Cermak #77 Belmont
#22 Clark #124 Navy Pier
#R22 Cermak-Roosevelt Express Shuttle #126 Jackson
#29 State #146 Inner Drive/Michigan Express
#35 31st/35th #147 Outer Drive Express
#36 Broadway #151 Sheridan
#44 Wallace/Racine #152 Addison
#50 Damen

Reroutes can be expected in the downtown area from 6:30 a.m. until 4 p.m.; on the North Side from 6:30 a.m. until noon; on the West Side from 7 a.m. until 2 p.m.; and on the South Side from 6:30 a.m. until 4 p.m.  All times are approximate and detours will be determined by Chicago Police and CTA supervisory personnel.

VIEWING AREAS NEAR CTA STATIONS

Viewing areas are designated near CTA rail stations at nine points along the marathon route for those interested in following the progress of the race.

  • First Viewing Area – Grand (Red Line) Station – Miles #1, #3 and #12. Board a Red Line train and exit at Grand Avenue.
  • Second Viewing Area – Monroe (Red Line) Station –Mile #2. Board a Red Line train and exit at Monroe. Walk two blocks south to Jackson/State.
  • Third Viewing Area – Chicago (Red Line) Station – Miles #3.5 and #11.5.  Board a Red Line train and exit at Chicago. Walk three blocks west to LaSalle Street.
  • Fourth Viewing Area – Addison (Red Line) Station – Mile #7.75.  Board a Red Line train and exit at Addison. Walk four blocks east to Broadway.
  • Fifth Viewing Area – Sedgwick (Brown Line) Station – Mile #10.25.  Board a Brown Line train and exit at Sedgwick Street. Walk a half-block north to North Avenue.
  • Sixth Viewing Area – UIC-Halsted (Blue Line) Station – Miles #16 and #16.5. Board a Blue Line train and exit at UIC-Halsted. Use the accessible Halsted Street exit or the auxiliary Peoria Street exit. Walk two blocks north on Peoria Street to Jackson Street to view runners at Mile #16 in Greektown or use the accessible Halsted exit to view runners at Mile #16.5.
    NOTE: the Morgan Street exit is temporarily closed due to demolition of the bridge over the expressway.
  • Seventh Viewing Area – 18th (Pink Line) Station – Mile #19. Board a Pink Line train and exit at 18th Street. Walk one block east to Ashland.
  • Eighth Viewing Area – Halsted (Orange Line) Station – Mile #20.5. Board an Orange Line train and exit at Halsted.
  • Ninth Viewing Area – 35th-Bronzeville-IIT (Red/Green Line) Station – Mile #23. Board a Red/Green Line train and exit at 35th-Bronzeville-IIT. Use either the 34th Street or 35th Street exit.
  • Tenth Viewing Area – Roosevelt (Red/Green/Orange Lines) Station – Finish Line. Board a Red, Green or Orange line train and exit at Roosevelt. Walk east on Roosevelt Road toward the Museum Campus/Grant Park. Additional service will be provided on the #R22 Cermak-Roosevelt Express Shuttle for the duration of the race. This shuttle operates between the temporarily closed Cermak-Chinatown Red Line station and the Roosevelt Red/Orange/Green transfer station.
  • Second Viewing Area – Monroe (Red Line) Station –Mile #2. Board a Red Line train and exit at Monroe. Walk two blocks south to Jackson/State.
  • Third Viewing Area – Chicago (Red Line) Station – Miles #3.5 and #11.5.  Board a Red Line train and exit at Chicago. Walk three blocks west to LaSalle Street.
  • Fourth Viewing Area – Addison (Red Line) Station – Mile #7.75.  Board a Red Line train and exit at Addison. Walk four blocks east to Broadway.
  • Fifth Viewing Area – Sedgwick (Brown Line) Station – Mile #10.25.  Board a Brown Line train and exit at Sedgwick Street. Walk a half-block north to North Avenue.
  • Sixth Viewing Area – UIC-Halsted (Blue Line) Station – Miles #16 and #16.5. Board a Blue Line train and exit at UIC-Halsted. Use the accessible Halsted Street exit or the auxiliary Peoria Street exit. Walk two blocks north on Peoria Street to Jackson Street to view runners at Mile #16 in Greektown or use the accessible Halsted exit to view runners at Mile #16.5.
    NOTE: the Morgan Street exit is temporarily closed due to demolition of the bridge over the expressway.
  • Seventh Viewing Area – 18th (Pink Line) Station – Mile #19. Board a Pink Line train and exit at 18th Street. Walk one block east to Ashland.
  • Eighth Viewing Area – Halsted (Orange Line) Station – Mile #20.5. Board an Orange Line train and exit at Halsted.
  • Ninth Viewing Area – 35th-Bronzeville-IIT (Red/Green Line) Station – Mile #23. Board a Red/Green Line train and exit at 35th-Bronzeville-IIT. Use either the 34th Street or 35th Street exit.
  • Tenth Viewing Area – Roosevelt (Red/Green/Orange Lines) Station – Finish Line. Board a Red, Green or Orange line train and exit at Roosevelt. Walk east on Roosevelt Road toward the Museum Campus/Grant Park. Additional service will be provided on the #R22 Cermak-Roosevelt Express Shuttle for the duration of the race. This shuttle operates between the temporarily closed Cermak-Chinatown Red Line station and the Roosevelt Red/Orange/Green transfer station.

Chicago will join the world, sports stage on Sunday when it hosts its 36th annual marathon, and Mayor Emanuel and marathon leaders said Thursday they are focused on public safety.

The race will come several months after the terror attacks at the Boston Marathon killed three people and wounded hundreds of others.

At the Hilton Chicago Thursday morning, Emanuel and Executive Race Director Carey Pinkowski expressed an eagerness to move ahead from that tragic time, and showcase Chicago’s character.

“But, it was evident to me and our organization, how strong, how determined, and how united the running community is. And together we move forward, that we move forward with confidence, move forward with strength,” said Pinkowski.

As part of new security measures, runners will not be allowed to bring backpacks or other bags on the route. They’ll will be given clear, plastic bags instead to check their items. For the first time, only registered runners and spectators with tickets will be allowed near the start and finish lines in Grant Park.

The first wave of runners will take off at 7:30am. The race will wind through 29 neighborhoods. About 45,000 runners from across the U.S. and the world will compete in the event.

WGN News Writer C. Hayes published this story.

For Stephanie Baliga, her early morning runs are a daily endeavor of endurance.  One she meets with enthusiasm and energy of body and spirit.

Stephanie Baliga is also known as Sister Stephanie, from the community of Franciscans of the Eucharist.

She runs through Chicago’s Humboldt Park each day before dawn and returns back in time for mass at the rectory of the Mission of Our Lady of the Angels. The 25-year-old moved to the city’s West Side and to religious life three years ago, after graduating as a scholar athlete from the University of Illinois- Champaign.

There, she was the sixth freshman in the nation while participating in cross country when tragedy occurred.

Stephanie broke her foot while running and didn’t take that setback in her varsity career very well at all.

“When that was taken away, I felt like my whole life had been taken away,” she says.

It was then she says that her focus took a turn  to higher considerations.  After six months of involvement at the campus Catholic Newman Center, she said she had a new mindset and a new vocation to religious life.

“God did not value me because I was fast,” she says.  “God valued me because I was Stephanie Baliga.”

But Stephanie had a critical question: could a nun….run?

The answer was yes as long as she covered her knees and her head before heading off.

Stephanie also works to provide food to 700 families a month. 900 neighborhood kids participate in the mission’s after school programs. Every Tuesday, the mission hosts a program for seniors which includes exercise, computer classes, and bible study

The services they extend to the city’s West Side cost. Sister Stephanie had a solution to some financial strain: A marathon team that collects pledges from supporters.  Last year they raised $26,000 dollars.

25242161More than 40 have joined Sister Stephanie’s team seeking pledges and support for marathon day.

Not only is Sister Stephanie seeking to raise big bucks, secondarily, she hopes to qualify for next year’s elite corral. Her goal is to finish the marathon in about three hours. That would qualify her for Boston with a pace of well under 7 minutes a mile.  But Sister Stephanie wants to remind us, that’s not what truly matters.

“My worth is not through my actions, my worth is because I exist and God wanted me here and I am a child of God,” she says.

For more information and how you can help, log on to http://missionola.com/

45,000 runners and more than a million spectators are expected at this year’s Chicago Marathon.

The setup is already underway and security is top of the list or priorities.

As the final touches are put onto the start and finish lines at Grant Park, the lessons learned from the Boston Marathon bombings nearly 6 months to the day of Chicago’s race were revealed Tuesday.

Chicago police, emergency management, US secret service, FBI and homeland security are among the many departments who’ve stepped up restrictions and enforcement for Sunday’s race.

No large bags or backpacks will be allowed.  Instead, runners will get a clear plastic bag to hold items when they check in.

Unlike past years, runners cannot leave unattended bags at Grant Park or anywhere along the route.

And spectators will not be allowed to join a runner on the course as it winds through 29 Chicago neighborhoods.

And for the first time, only registered runners and ticket holders will be allowed at the start and finish lines.

And even though there’s no known threats to Chicago or the marathon, explosives detection teams from local and federal agencies will out along the entire course, including bomb sniffing dogs.

Undercover officers will be in the crowd and video surveillance will be used.

Mayor Emanuel wants to ensure everyone that the city will be a safe place during this weekend’s Chicago Marathon.

Runners and spectators will notice more security measures at this year’s marathon.

Runners will be required to pick up their race packets in person and carry their belongings in clear plastic bags.

Spectators in the reunion area, after the race, will be subjected to a bag search.

Police will also be checking bags along the race route.

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