Local runners take part in 26th annual Grandma’s Marathon

Over 16,000 runners took part in this year’s 26th annual Grandma’s Marathon June 22 in downtown Duluth. Included in this field were 12 runners from the Morrison County area.

On the men’s side, Scott Fischer of Pierz finished in 560th place with a time of 3:15:50. Fischer finished 198th out of 580 in his age division (19-34).

Mark Huffman of Pierz came in 3,436th with a time of 4:26:49. Huffman also gave some insight as to what the Grandma’s Marathon was like.

“It was, physically, the hardest thing I’ve ever done,” he said. “It’s really amazing. The farthest you go without a crowd of people cheering you on is about one-half mile.”

Huffman also said that once he hit the 18-mile mark he didn’t think he would be able to finish.

“Other runners would run by and tell me I could do it,” he said. “I also had a shirt with an American flag on it and the crowd would yell, ‘come on America! You can do it!’”

Jeffery March of Little Falls finished the 26.2 mile trek with a time of 4:46:08 and placed 3,926th.

Bernie and Wesley Otremba of Pierz finished 3,960th and 4,279th respectively. Bernie clocked in at 4:49:30 while Wesley finished at 5:22:07.

Julie Lochner of Pierz crossed the finish line at 4:11:26 on the women’s side. Her time was good enough for 1,045th overall and 611th out of 1,422 in her 19-34 age group.

Elizabeth Rydeen of Little Falls completed the race in 5:10:24 and finished in 2,301st place.

The average finishing time for the event was 4:11:54.

Kurt Devine and Amy Deml, both of Little Falls, had strong showings in the half marathon event.

Devine finished the race in 1:17:19. His time earned him 34th overall and 9th in his age division (40-44)

Deml clocked in at 93rd place with a time of 1:39:59. She placed 22nd in her age division (35-39).

Also competing in the half marathon was Maggie Johnson of Little Falls who finished in 877th with a time of 2:05:16. Chad Kaddatz of Little Falls placed 1,366th with a time of 2:05:37. Placing 190th with a time of 2:07:27 was Kelly Nagel, also of Little Falls.

“The camaraderie of the event was really amazing,” Huffman concluded. “Hopefully I can do it again next year.”

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