Alyeska Classic Mountain Run will benefit Kenney

The final event in the annual Alaska Mountain Runners Grand Prix series, which will benefit an injured mountain runner, and one of the city's largest footraces, which includes a marathon, highlight local running this weekend.

On Saturday, the Alyeska Classic Mountain Run, a 2.2-mile, uphill-only grind on Mount Alyeska in Girdwood with a noon start time, will double as a fund-raiser for the family of Matt Kenney, a long-time mountain runner who was seriously injured in a fall at Mount Marathon in July.

All proceeds from race, which features a $30 entry fee, will go to Kenney's family.

Alyeska officials report that more than 300 runners already have registered for the event, which challenges racers with a 2,000-foot elevation gain. That pre-registration more than doubles the average number of runners who have completed the race in the three previous years.

Race-day registration opens at 10 a.m. The entry fee includes a ride down to the bottom of the mountain on the tram.

The Big Wild Life Runs, which is headlined by the marathon and also includes a marathon relay, half-marathon, five-kilometer race and 2-K kids race, is set for Sunday morning in Anchorage.

The races, which all start and finish near Town Square at the corner of Fifth Avenue and F Streeet, are expected to draw more than 2,500 combined runners.

The Big Wild Life courses primarily use the Coastal and Chester trails, and, of course, city streets.

The marathon walk begins at 8 a.m., with the marathon and marathon relay following at 9 a.m. The half-marathon begins at 9:20 a.m. and the 5-K at 9:40 a.m.

Two more chances remain for in-person during the race's Health and Fitness Expo at the Dena'ina Civic and Convention Center -- runners can register 3-7 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday.

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Anchorage Daily News