Updated: 04/18/2014 6:24 PM
Created: 04/18/2014 5:52 PM WDIO.com
By: Maarja Anderson
Runners ready for the first spring race of the year will come out in record numbers for this year's Fitger's 5K.
"It's my first 5K ever. It's my grandma's birthday tomorrow so I'm running it in memory of her," said first-time racer, Emily Rice.
Bob Gustafson with Grandma's Marathon said more than 2,000 runners will race down Superior Street this Saturday.
This year's 5K is also special for another reason. They are celebrating their 25th anniversary.
Tami Tanski Sherman with Fitger's has been at every single race. She said each year they run into the same problem.
"The weather! The weather is always a challenge. Either we have rain or we have snow or we have rain and snow," she explained.
Gustafson said the 5K is the just the beginning of many races coming up this spring and summer.
"It's exciting for us to sort of kick off the spring racing season and know it's just a couple of short months away from Grandma's Marathon," he said.
But this winter has made training pretty tough for many runners.
"Training has been hard and difficult, with the cold and everything," said Floyd Zylka, who has ran several Fitger's 5K races and Garry Bjorklund Half Marathons. "I tried to train inside, I'm not much on a treadmill, so I'd rather just run outside."
Despite the terrible training weather, Gustafson said entries for the full marathon are up 10 percent from this time last year. He expects the Garry Bjorklund Half will also break entry records.
The Fitger's 5K raises money for the Young Athletes Foundation.
Minn. Bill Would Require Talking to Doctor before Skipping Vaccine
A Minnesota lawmaker wants parents who don't vaccinate their children to meet with a doctor first.
Duluth Diocese Ordered to Turn Over Clergy Abuse Documents
A judge has given the Dioceses of New Ulm and Duluth until Feb.17 to turn over documents pertaining to alleged clergy sex abuse dating back to 1949.
Brookston Man Killed in Head-on Crash Near Floodwood
The Minnesota State Patrol says a head-on collision has killed a 19-year-old Brookston man. They say a MnDOT snow plow truck and a Chevy Silverado collided head-on on Highway 2 near Floodwood.
Up-Close Look at Winter Layup in the Port
U.S. Flag Fleets transport more than 115 million tons of cargo per year, but all of that weight combined with last year's heavy ice, means a lot of repair damage during this year's winter layup.
Beargrease 2015: Crossing the Finish Line
For first-time mushers and veterans, there's just something about crossing that Beargrease finish line. Erin Altemus, who took fourth place in the marathon, said it's the same for the dogs. "There is a psychological thing about that," she said. "They sort of understand that they're at the end."