And They’re Off

Oakland sponsors first race in quarter century

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Thousands hit the ground running Sunday in Oakland for the Oakland Running Festival.

The run starts and ends at City Hall.  Some 6,000 people signed up for three runs, including a 5k on Saturday and a half and full marathon on Sunday.

Marathon runners will began the journey  at Frank Ogawa Plaza on Broadway and wind through several neighborhoods, including Chinatown. The final lap wraps around Lake Merritt before the home stretch to the finish line at City Hall.

Several groups sponsored the races, which is the first major running event for the city in 25 years. Bands and musical acts will entertain all weekend.

Organizers are hoping the weekend events will spread a positive image for the city and turn participants into running billboards as they travel throughout the country wearing their race tshirt.

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