Meb will start from the back of the field in the 40th Indy Mini to allow maximum number of participants to run or walk with him throughout the race
INDIANAPOLIS (January 20, 2016) The 500 Festival, a nonprofit organization providing life-enriching events and programs celebrating the legacy of the Indianapolis 500, announces that U.S. Olympian Meb Keflezighi (pronounced Kef-lez-ghee) will run the 2016 OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon on May 7, 2016.
Widely acclaimed as one of the greatest runners of our time, Meb is the only athlete in history to win the New York Marathon, the Boston Marathon, and an Olympic medal. Beyond his athletic achievements, Meb is passionate about inspiring individuals of all ages and athletic abilities to achieve their personal best. With that commitment in mind, the record setting runner will not start at the front of the Indy Mini with the other elite athletes. Instead, Meb will serve as the official starter for Wave 1 and Wave 2, then he will start his race at the very back of the Mini-Marathon, to ensure all participants in the 2016 OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon have the opportunity to run or walk with him.
“The OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon is a great race in a beautiful city. It has truly become one of the preeminent races in the world,” Keflezighi said. “I am looking forward to running with the Mini-Marathon participants and taking a lap around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this May!”
The OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon is one of the nation’s premiere half-marathons. 2016 will be a commemorative year for this 500 Festival tradition, as it marks the 40th running of the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon and the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500.
“The OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon is unique because it appeals to elite runners, casual runners and walkers alike,” said Bob Bryant, president and CEO, 500 Festival. “40 years ago this race started as a fun opportunity to connect the community with the Indianapolis 500. It has since evolved into one of the world’s largest half-marathons and is vital part of our city’s fabric. We’re ecstatic to have Meb Keflezighi, a running icon, participate alongside thousands of Mini-Marathon participants.”
To celebrate Meb’s participation in the 2016 OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon, any Mini-Marathon participants who have registered before January 31 will be entered to win a private, VIP dinner with Meb Keflezighi and the other elite runners on Friday, May 6th. Additional details, rules and regulations regarding the VIP dinner giveaway are available here. Participants can also meet Meb at the 500 Festival Mini-Marathon Expo on Friday, May 6, 2016 from 3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
The Indy Mini is the 500 Festival’s largest fundraiser. Race registrations help support the 500 Festival’s free youth programs and events. By getting nearly 40,000 moving, the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon and Finish Line 500 Festival 5K have become the state’s largest health initiatives, helping Hoosiers get focused on their health and well-being. The course for the Mini-Marathon is flat and fast and appeals to runners and walkers alike. It begins near the intersection of Washington and West Streets in downtown Indianapolis, heads west toward the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and includes a lap around the famed 2.5 mile track before heading back downtown to the finish line at Military Park.
Spaces are still available for the 2016 OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon. Now through February 16, the registration fee is $75. Pricing after February 16 is as follows:
- February 17, 2016 – May 3, 2016: $85
- May 4 – 6, 2016: $95
The OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon is sponsored by OneAmerica, Finish Line, Franciscan St. Francis Health and Meijer. The Mini-Marathon will be broadcast to the Indianapolis market on WTHR, Channel 13. To register for the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon, or to learn more, visit www.indymini.com or search #IndyMini on social media.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Keflezighi expresses his excitement about participating in the Indy Mini in a video he recorded before one of his training sessions. The video is available here.
A photo of Meb is available here.
About the 500 Festival
Founded in 1957, the 500 Festival is a not-for-profit organization that produces more than 50 life-enriching events and programs while celebrating the spirit and legacy of the Indianapolis 500 and fostering positive impact on the city of Indianapolis and state of Indiana. One of the largest festivals in the nation, each year more than half a million people attend an event or program produced by the 500 Festival. Since its founding, the 500 Festival has contributed more than $350 million in economic value to Indianapolis. To learn more about the 500 Festival, please visit www.500festival.com, follow us on Twitter @500festival, or on Facebook.