VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) - More than 28,000 runners competed in the annual Shamrock marathon and half marathon races at the Oceanfront this St. Patrick's Day.
A few raindrops fell as runners made their way to the start line. The wind also made it hard to warm up.
"I prefer the cold," said one runner from Lincoln, Nebraska. "But I don't like too much wind."
For him, the Shamrock marathon is part of a larger goal to run a marathon in all 50 states. He also competed in Saturday's marathon in Washington, D.C..
"Pretty much you just have to keep yourself healthy and running," he said. "That's what they tell me, so I've been doing it 12 years now, and I think it works!"
New runner Starr Whatley would agree.
"I started out running, just trying to lose some weight after I had twins," said Whatley. "I started with a 5k and kind of became addicted to running."
But no matter what brought them to the Shamrock marathon, they all shared a common goal, to finish what they started.
The different Shamrock races had staggered starts throughout the morning. Supporters and musicians lined the course to keep runners motivated.
Runners say the cheering helps, but determination is what really gets marathoners through the miles.
"When it starts to get really tough, I just remember, two years ago, you couldn't even run a half a mile, look how far you've come," said Whatley. "You can do this! Don't quit now."
And eventually off in the distance, they hear a list of names being announced at the finish line, and they think about the sense of accomplishment and adult beverages waiting for them.
"It's wonderful," said one runner as he crossed the finish. "A wonderful feeling!"
The women's first place finisher was Tezeta Dengersa, with a time of 2:49. Christopher Zablocki was the first male to finish, and first overall, with a time of 2:17.
Two weeks before Christmas and 250 local workers are out of a job.
A Navy pilot stationed at Oceana Naval Air Station in Virginia Beach was denied bond Monday after being charged with child pornography.
A Freedom of Information Act response from the Norfolk Police Department reveals more details about the attack of a woman at the Ross department store at Military Circle last week.
Virginia Beach Events is reviewing policies and procedures after a float caught fire during the TowneBank Holiday Parade Saturday night.
The Hampton Police Division needs help identifying the suspect in a motel robbery early Monday morning.
To ease holiday mailing, the Richmond District of the U.S. Postal Service is extending its Saturday window hours.
Free Christmas trees will be given to active-duty members of the military and their families Wednesday.