There's more than just good news for racers who cross the finish line at this year's Deseret News/Granite Furniture Marathon and 10K races, and the 5K Fitness Walk — there's a lot of good, healthful food to eat, as well.
Thanks to Albertson's and a number of its vendors, those who complete their events on July 24 at Liberty Park will receive plenty of fresh fruit, cookies, crackers and cheese, bagels, string cheese and yogurt. This is the second year that Albertson's has joined with the DesNews, Granite Furniture and Salt Lake County Parks and Recreation as a sponsor for the annual events on Pioneer Day.
Jim Morgan is Albertson's advertising manager, and it was his job last year to bring the idea of supporting runners to many of his vendors. Last year's initial involvement was a huge success for everyone, and many vendors were quick to respond again this year.
"I think everyone likes being involved in community events like these great races," he said. "We have about a dozen volunteers from our office who work with many volunteers from county parks to help create our Albertson's Alley."
That alley consists of tables lining the finishing area in Liberty Park. As each runner finishes, they are handed a plastic bag which they can fill with Sunkist oranges, Washington apples, Chiquita bananas, Keebler cookies, Kraft crackers and cheese, Albertson's string cheese, Lay's potato chips, Albertson's own line of Papa Pita bagels, and Meadow Gold yogurt. Albertson's brings in a huge refrigeration truck the day before the race to keep everything fresh, and even offers part of the truck to other vendors in the park that day.
"Our racers have told us how much they appreciate Albertson's efforts," stated Lauren Jacobsen, assistant race director. "When we set up Albertson's Alley last year, it was probably the most popular addition we've made to the race for some time."
But Albertson's involvement doesn't stop with the food. Each aid station has petroleum jelly on hand for racers, and Albertson's hands out plenty of aspirin at the finish line to runners who are feeling a few new aches and pains. Runners can also find Popsicles and gum at the finish. In all, about 5,000 units of each food item are made available for those running or walking on July 24.
"We think this is a great way to thank the community that has supported us," Morgan said.
You can register now at all four Granite Furniture locations in Salt Lake City, West Jordan, Orem and Layton; at Salt Lake County Parks and Recreation, 2001 S. State #S-4900, and at the Deseret News, 30 East 100 South. You can also register online at two sites: deseretnews.com/run and slcoevents.com through July 16. Call 801-468-2299 for information.