Illinois Marathon 5k leaves positive reactions

On April 21st, Uni students ran the Illinois Marathon 5k in place of the Not Your Average Joe 5k.

This change was due to financial reasons.

“Human Kinetics… always sponsored 5k and they informed… that because of cutbacks in the company for financial reasons they just don’t have the staff to really support it so they were getting out of business,” said Athletic Director Tim Bicknell.

With the Not Your Average Joe no longer in the picture, the PE department got together to decide what to do. One of the choices they were faced with was to rent out Crystal Lake Park (which was done by Human Kinetics every year). The problem with this idea was that there were no funds, because the money given by each student for the race was solely for admission.

One day, Bicknell received a call from Jane Seely, co-director of the Illinois Marathon, who asked if Uni would be interested in joining the Illinois Marathon. The PE department decided to go with this option.

Students have said different things about the race, but overall reactions have been positive.

In comparison to the Not Your Average Joe, freshman Elizabeth Reinstra liked the Illinois 5k more overall.

“I thought it was more fun than the Not Your Average Joe… I liked the amount of people there. It was just a lot more fun.”

Senior Ethan Simmons said a “big thing for him” was that for the Average Joe you have to run the same course twice, while the 5k is “just one complete concrete course that’s completely flat for most of it”.

Senior Matthew Reeder “sort of liked” having the smaller 5k, but believed there were definitely nice things about the big one.

As of right now, Bicknell says the Illinois 5k is a one time thing. A large factor is the cost of the Illinois 5k compared to the Not Your Average Joe.

“$10 of the student fees goes towards registration [for the Not Your Average Joe]… The cheapest that anybody could ever get in [for the Illinois 5k]… is around $25… There’s where the conversation will have to go depending on Illinois marathon directors and how big of a deal they want to cut us.”