Participants run for charity during Utah Valley Marathon

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Runners approach the finish line in downtown Provo after completing the Utah Valley Marathon. Spectators lined the area by the finish line to cheer on the runners. (Emily May)

The Utah Valley Marathon invited thousands of runners to run various distances throughout Utah Valley on Saturday, June 1.

Runners participated in full marathons, half-marathons, 10K races and 5K races. Children also participated in a 1K race.

A map shows the full marathon. Over a thousand runners ran along this entire 26.2-mile trail. (Utah Valley Marathon)

The 26.2-mile marathon began at 6 a.m. Saturday morning in Wallsburg, southeast of the Deer Creek Reservoir, according to the Utah Valley Marathon website. Runners traveled downhill through Provo Canyon by the Provo River, passing Bridal Veil Falls. The race ended on University Avenue near the Utah County Courthouse grounds in downtown Provo.

The first-place runner of the full marathon finished the race in just under 2 hours and 20 minutes, according to Utah Valley Marathon. Most runners completed the marathon in three and a half to five hours.

Utah Valley Marathon said this race has one of the fastest average finish times in the world.

The emcee at the marathon said many of the runners ran to qualify for the Boston Marathon while others ran to achieve their personal fitness goals.

“Each and every one of us can set goals and make magic happen,” the emcee said.

Tanner Pone and Hailey Fink, runners from Scottsdale, Arizona, completed the 26.2-mile marathon together.

“We did a half marathon in Tucson, and then we’re like, ‘The next step is go to Provo and do this marathon,’” Pone said. “We couldn’t be happier.”

Both runners expressed the sights they encountered during the marathon were beautiful.

“This was a great marathon,” Fink said. “We’ve been loving exploring the town of Provo.”

Two runners hug each other after crossing the finish line in downtown Provo. Thousand of runners crossed this finish line during the Utah Valley Marathon. (Emily May)

The 13.1-mile half marathon began on the U.S. 189 in Provo Canyon near Sundance, according to Utah Valley Marathon, and followed the same route as the full marathon until reaching the finish line in downtown Provo.

BYU law student Hannah Barnes participated in the half marathon. She said she signed up for two half marathons in the past but did not run either.

“I just wanted to prove to myself that I could do it and say that I did it,” Barnes said. “It’s just been like a bucket list item for a while. I’m just glad I finished it.”

The emcee and spectators cheer on runners as they approach the finish line in downtown Provo. Crowds cheered on thousands of runners during the Utah Valley Marathon. (Emily May)

The 10K began in North Provo and followed University Avenue until the finish line, while the 5K on Friday, May 31 looped through the Riverwoods in North Provo. The 1K race for children looped around a couple blocks of downtown Provo on Saturday.

Children and parents approach the finish line of the 1K race. This race was free for children, and parents could run with their children as well. (Emily May)

Runners in the marathon ran for charitable causes, including Charity Vision, Kids on the Move and the Stella H. Oaks Foundation, the emcee at the marathon said.

“Not only do they run for joy, they run for good,” the emcee said.

More information on these charities can be found on the Utah Valley Marathon website.

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