Some are casual joggers, others serious competitors. Yet, nearly all the 1,600 or so runners expected to participate Sunday morning in the 10th Raintree Run have something in common, according to race co-founder Steve Riley.
They all love the edible goodies.
"It's a huge food fest," said Riley, who started the race with wife Marcia as a means of raising funds for the Raintree Montessori School their two children attended. "All the Raintree families bring homemade cookies, cakes, you name it. The runners run a half-marathon and go pig out. It's one of the signatures of the race."
Three races make up the event. The 5K race is set to go off at 8 a.m. Sunday. The half-marathon is set to start five minutes after that, and the mile "fun run" is scheduled for a 10:30 a.m. start.
Interested participants who have not yet registered can do so Saturday afternoon at Raintree (4601 Clinton Parkway) from 1-7 p.m. Race-day registration takes place from 6:30-7:30 a.m.
The South Lawrence Trafficway hike/bike path will be closed to the public from 7 a.m. to noon because of the race.
Shadrack Kimeli, last year's half-marathon winner, has not registered to run this year, Steve Riley said, but his roommate, fellow Kenyan Vincent Topiwo, is considered the favorite to take the $300 first-place purse.
Oklahoma Road Runner of the Year Pete Orban, 50, has registered to compete and is, according to Riley, "the second-most famous native of Claremore, Oklahoma," ranking behind only Will Rogers.
The Rileys teach at different elementary schools in the Perry-Lecompton School District. They already had experience organizing races and decided to do one as a fund-raiser for Raintree in 1996. The race was canceled one year because of a fire at the school, so Sunday's will be the 10th race.
"It just keeps getting bigger and bigger," Steve Riley said.