Monday, November 3, 2008

New York City Marathon

It was a lovely Sunday afternoon when we decided to head out to Central Park to enjoy the fall foliage. We took the PATH to 33rd St and then the C train to Columbus Circle. The moment we came out of the subway station, this is what we saw.
So many people!! There were just people everywhere! The streets were closed off to traffic and we saw many people walking around with medals around their necks. Then it occurred to me that the NY Marathon was going on this weekend and the finish line was in Central Park!
The NYC Marathon is really big here in NY. The route goes through the five boroughs of NY (Staten Island, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx & Manhattan), starting from Staten Island and ending at Tavern on the Green in Central Park. 98,000 people from all over the world applied to run in this marathon and 38,000 people made it pass the finish line. Over 2 million people turned up to support the runners. This numbers make the NYC Marathon the largest marathon in the world.
Here are some of the runners entering Central Park. This was around 4pm, about 7 hours into the race.

By the time we walked into Central Park, it was already at the tail end of the race. The sun was setting and the people were not looking to get a medal anymore, they were just glad to finish the race. Still, many people stayed to cheer them on and there were many fun activities going on, like stages with live performances at various locations.

We joined the rest of the crowd to cheer on the runners at the last 200m of the marathon. The whole street was lined with flags from countries around the world. It was actually quite a sight to see the faces of the runners finishing the race. It doesn't matter how long it took them, just finishing the race was an achievement in itself. Maybe I should start training and participate in the marathon next year. The prize is half a million dollars for the winner! Hahaha, even one gazillion dollars would not get me to run a mile, let alone a marathon :P However, I'll be at the Tavern on the Green, with a glass of champagne, waiting for the runners to roll in and to cheer them on! Hey, that's considered participating too!!!

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