By Tim Jimenez, Anita Oh
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Thousands of people from Philadelphia and across the country got their feet going Sunday morning in a half marathon that was all about the love.
Saturday’s heat gave way to much chillier temperatures, but that didn’t slow down the 10,000 runners who laced up for the 4th annual Philly Love Run. This year’s course stretched 13.1 miles from the Ben Franklin Parkway, through Center City and along the Schuylkill River in Fairmount Park, starting and ending at the Art Museum.
“It’s really great. It’s the camaraderie. It’s the love. Share the love,” said Cheryl, part of the group Black Girls Run. She was sharing the love with her friend Michelle, who prepared for the longest run of her life.
“Before this was a 10K,” she said. “So, yeah this is my first official half marathon.”
Michelle had long pink socks to go with her pink, blue, purple and green hair. A perfect match for the name on her race bib.
“You see my name is Eccentric Diva. I consider myself a diva,” Michelle explained. “That’s why I like to have my colors and make it look cute while you’re running!”
The event was sold out again this year. CGI Racing, which organizes the run, says the money raised will go towards local charities, including the Fairmount Park Conservancy.
“Over the four years, we’ve raised $225,000 for local groups,” said race director, Michele Redrow.
David Goldstein of Voorhees, New Jersey ran while pushing his 21-year-old son Josh, who has special needs, in a wheelchair. They plan to participate in a triathlon over the summer.
“I had a special customized chair made and we get out there, do races, and promote inclusion – that kids like him, yes they can be part of races as well,” Goldstein, who also runs a local chapter of Ainsley’s Angels, said.
Ainsley’s Angels of America is a national organization that aims to raise awareness about special needs and promote inclusion.
Others from out-of-state planned to run in the half marathon as part of a group ‘Runcation.’
Chris Pearce and 68 other members of the ‘RVA Dogpack’ running group arrived from Richmond, Virginia.
“A couple years ago, I stepped on the scale and was over 280 pounds,” Pierce said. “And I just really realized I needed to do a lot to turn my life around.”