Steve’s twelfth marathon of the year was the popular Honolulu Marathon. This time we were joined by our neighbor and dear friend Sheri, and Sheri and I did the 10K while Steve took on the 42K/26.2 mile marathon. Of course the festivities began with the race expo where we picked up our race numbers and shopped for running-related stuff. This expo was unique as there were many featured products from Japan, where more than half of the registered runners come from.
While in Honolulu we also spent a day at the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC) and experienced the requisite luau. The PCC has been a tourist draw in Oahu for over 50 years, so we couldn’t pass it up. The immaculate park showcases cultures from around the Pacific and allowed us hands-on experiences like poi tasting, canoe rides, fake tattoos, and lots of hula. It was a long day, but worth the exploration.
Another fun surprise while in Honolulu was running into our hometown stars, the Prescott High School Marching Band. They were featured in the Pearl Harbor Memorial Day parade, and we ran right into them while strolling the downtown area.
The big event started at 5:00am on Sunday with a big fireworks show, kicking off the marathon and 10K. We lined up with 30,000+ of our closest friends, at least half of whom spoke Japanese.
Steve worked his way towards the front of the crowd in order to run and still had to dodge thousands to get his stride. Sheri and I hung back and walked the 10K course, stopping along the way to take photos of the beautiful holiday decorations that punctuated the course.
Sheri and I finished our stroll and celebrated with delectable malasadas. Warm and doughy, these fried balls of dough, rolled in sugar, were the most awesome post-race food we’ve seen.
Steve finished his 12th marathon of the year in 4 hours and 17 minutes. Not the fastest race, not the slowest race, he was happy with performance this time around. He says he’s not done with marathons but likely won’t do one a month in 2020.
Now we are planning to head to the island of Molokai for some downtime and a fly-in visit to Kalaupapa National Historic Park. Sheri and I, especially, are excited to see and learn more about the legendary place where Father Damien ministered to the lepers who were exiled to the remote peninsula.