East Tennessee children will celebrate the kickoff of the Covenant Kids Run with a one-mile event at Zoo Knoxville in January and complete their personal marathon on the 50-yard line at Neyland Stadium on race day in April.
The kickoff run at Zoo Knoxville will be held Saturday, Jan. 28, at noon. The cost is $15 and covers the one-mile fun run at the zoo and the Covenant Kids Run on April 1. Families can register in advance at www.knoxvillemarathon.com or on-site starting at 10 a.m. the day of the event. The registration fee also includes free admission to the zoo for the race participant and one accompanying guest for the day of the fun run, and any additional guests with the child will receive half-price admission.
“We look forward to this event each year,” said Jason Altman, executive director of the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon. “The Covenant Kids Run is a fun way to promote a healthy lifestyle for the children in our community. Families are encouraged to attend the fun run to get kids excited about completing their first mile as they prepare for the final goal of a 26.2-mile marathon.”
This year, the Covenant Kids Run features a fresh look and new mascots. Superhero-themed mascots Blazin’ Blake and Joggin’ Janiah encourage kids to take action through exercise and be the heroes of their own health. The new mascots are challenging all East Tennessee youth to take the superhero challenge of completing their own personal marathon at the Covenant Kids Run. In addition to a medal, every child that crosses the finish line in Neyland Stadium on April 1 also will get a Covenant Kids Run superhero cape.
Children in eighth grade and younger are eligible to participate in the Kids Run. Each child who registers for the Covenant Kids Run receives a logbook to track miles or the exercise equivalent, such as 30 minutes of active playtime. All physical activity counts toward the child’s marathon goal. The children complete the last mile April 1 during the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon race weekend, when the Covenant Kids Run starts in World’s Fair Park and ends in Neyland Stadium. The children run their last mile together, finishing on the 50-yard line and seeing themselves on the Jumbotron.
“At Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon, we are passionate about putting an end to childhood obesity, and we believe the fun run is a great way to get kids moving by making fitness both fun and goal-oriented,” Altman said. “This event is filled with excitement from start to finish. Kids will never forget the sense of accomplishment they felt beginning with their first mile at Zoo Knoxville and crossing the finish line at Neyland Stadium as part of the marathon race weekend.”
Each child that participates in the Covenant Kids Run on April 1 also will earn one point for his or her school in the Fittest School Challenge, a competition among area elementary schools. Schools register for the Covenant Kids Run and provide a total student enrollment count. The top 10 schools with the highest percentage of student participation in the race win prize money and the title of Fittest School.
In the event of inclement weather, the Covenant Kids Run kickoff at Zoo Knoxville will be held Saturday, Feb. 4. For more information, visit knoxvillemarathon.com or call 865-684-4294.
About the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon
The Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon is a premier event organized by the Knoxville Track Club, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to the encouragement of physical well-being through running and walking.