Bellin Run Celebrates Boston Marathon Connections

April 17, 2017

Pop quiz: Who is the most recent runner to join the ranks of athletes who have won both the Bellin Run and the Boston Marathon?

If you answered Meb Keflezighi (Boston 2014, Bellin 2016), you’re right. But did you know the connections between the two events began well before crowd-favorite Keflezighi began joining us for Green Bay’s signature 10K? That in fact they date back almost to the Bellin Run’s inception in 1977?

Today marks the 121st running of the Boston Marathon, and our heads and hearts are with our buddies in Beantown. To commemorate the occasion, we’re pausing to celebrate our shared history with this iconic race.

In addition to Keflezighi, several winners of the Boston Marathon have competed in and won the Bellin Run, starting with Bill Rodgers in the late 1970s. “Boston Billy” won both the 1978 Boston Marathon and the second annual Bellin Run later that year. Other legendary champions, including Uta Pippig, Joan Benoit Samuelson and of course, Keflezighi, have won Green Bay’s renowned 10K race. Keflezighi has become a Bellin favorite known for remaining at the finish line to offer runners high fives long after he has crossed.

Through the years, contingents of Bellin runners have traveled from Green Bay to traverse the historic route from Hopkinton to Boston. Scores of volunteers from Bellin Health and the Bellin Run have made the trek to assist with the marathon and learn from the best road race organizers in the business.

We’ve also come to know Boston race director Dave McGillivray, one of Runner’s World magazine’s “50 Most Influential People in Running,” as a friend — and now, a partner. He serves as our operational race director for the Bellin Run. McGillivray joined us in 2008 and his company, DMSE Sports, assists with our planning and operations. The Bellin Run is proud to have one of the most respected organizers of running events in the world on our team.

In 2014, the Bellin Run joined the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon, Downtown Green Bay, Inc. and the city of Green Bay for the Run as One Boston Marathon Tribute Run. Held at the same time as the 118th running of the Boston Marathon, the event was a local show of solidarity in the wake of the 2013 finish line bombings that shook not only the running community, but the nation and indeed the world.

Here’s to all those participating in, organizing and cheering for today’s Boston Marathon. Here’s to the power of Boston Strong. From Bellin to Boston, make it a great race.

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