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Fargo Marathon returns, sparks big response on the sidelines

Supporters cheered as thousands of racers took to the streets for a day of running.

Fargo Marathon
A racer embraces a friend as she continues to run in the Fargo Marathon.
Mike McGurran
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After months of preparation, and a full week of events, the running of the Fargo marathon was back today in its normal time slot.

Even though it's nearly June, temperatures were hovering in the 30s the morning of the marathon. It's hard to imagine running 26 miles in that kind of weather.

And yet that's exactly what a crowd of thousands did.

Runners from across the country lined up on the floor of the Fargodome. Whether they were participating in the 10k, the half marathon, or the full marathon, cold weather was on some of their minds.

"It was hard getting out of bed, but I'm sure once we get going that we'll warm up pretty quick," said Andrea Homiston, who raced in the 10k.

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Shortly after seven AM, runners were off - exiting the Fargodome, hitting the streets of the Metro area.

They had plenty of supporters on the sidelines. Rod and Ellen Shafer blast out music and bang on pots to keep the energy going as racers fly by. They don't race themselves, they just get a kick out of cheering.

" We run from the porch to the street, that's as far as we go," said Ellen.

It was also a chance for some runners to raise awareness on issues they're passionate about. Heidi Greenwood ran in the half marathon today, all while helping organize the annual Angel Baby Mile.

160 flower pots spanned across the streets of the race route, honoring the lost babies of mothers. Greenwood hopes it sparks a conversation, and makes it easier for people to talk about hard issue.

"It's about changing the way we speak about infant and pregnancy loss and being more open to share about it," Greenwood said.

Sure, it's a pretty cold day for late May. But for the thousands running across town, their passionate supporters, and those looking to start a conversation, it's a great day for the Fargo Marathon.

"The fact that the Fargo marathon exists, it has changed our culture I think," said Ellen.

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