The Chilly Jazz Half Marathon
On a relatively unseasonably Saturday morning (or perhaps a rare instance of seasonably fall weather in New Orleans), 1468 entrants competed in the Jazz Half Marathon and 5K. Ian Carr cruised to a first-place finish with a time of 1:12:56, running even splits while outpacing his nearest competitor by about 5 minutes. Rounding out the men’s top three were Benjamin Maas and Ondrej Blaha, finishing with times of 1:17:58 and 1:20:06, respectively. On the women’s side, Michelle Parks took top honors with a finish of 1:22:33, also good for eighth overall. Meghann Lawson and Grace Thacker followed with times of 1:28:22 and 1:29:18. Thacker narrowly edged out Morgan Evans, finishing just seven seconds behind in 1:29:25. Timothy Divasto, Laura Garcia-Cardona, and Dave Pickett were the top three finishers amongst the 402 5K participants, running times of 19:05, 21:26, and 22:29.
Participants deservedly enjoyed a beer or six in Lafayette Square after traversing the windy course, hopefully making the hour-plus of running slightly less painful and the chilly weather less noticeable for those not covered by hot dog costumes and other spooky Halloween garbs. It usually works for yours truly. As my three readers may have surmised, live jazz music accompanied the post-race festivities, which is always music to the ears (sorry, it had to be done, though I am growing more ashamed of myself by the second).
All in all, it was a nice turnout for an event worth contributing to, as many of the funds the Jazz Half raises goes to Children’s Hospital’s Cancer Program. The race directly benefits the Lanasa-Greco Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders. More information can be found on the Jazz Half and Children’s Hospital websites. We include this here to point out that many local races contribute to great causes, and while racing always offers something to those participating, it never hurts to be reminded that runners and walkers are often presented with opportunities to help others through these events.
– or check out some of our favorite photos from the race below.