In October, seven Canadians invaded the
lovely town of Corning, New York to participate in the 2016 Wineglass Marathon.
We had two blind runners with their guides, a first time marathoner who was
just short of her 59th birthday, and two friends to cheer us on.
The day before the race our group decided to
take in the Corning Museum of Glass. I was sceptical since I find museums are
often quite boring for people who are blind. However, there were many parts of
this museum that are tactile, so Richard and I were both able to enjoy the
displays as well. We were even invited to go into the glass making area to
touch the tools and check out the work space. In the words of my guide Kory, “Two
blind people, hot melting glass... What could go wrong?”
The morning of the race was chilly but sunny.
This was my first full marathon and I don’t mind saying that I was worried
about how it would go. My friend Philipa, my guide Kory and I all decided to
run together with the goal of crossing the finish line, without worrying about
time. Our goal was to have as much fun as possible along the way. Richard and
his guide Pedro were way up at the front going for a specific time, so we waved
them off and told them to meet us at the finish line.
The first couple of kilometres were
difficult, but then the temperature warmed up and it was perfect running
weather. We had a wonderful time taking pictures and dancing through aid
stations. Around the 26km marker, I stopped at a medical tent to get a pain
killer and some liquid ice for my leg. A lovely man at the tent came to my
rescue and asked if I felt light headed. I wasn’t sure what he was asking, but
Kory laughed and said, “No, she is fine. She is just blind.” This seemed to
confuse the dear man, but I explained that it was alright... I was like that
when I started the race.
We got back on the road and were excited to
be getting close to the end when we came across a few people giving out wine
and beer (hence why this race is called the Wineglass Marathon) at the 38km
marker. Of course, being polite Canadians, we stopped and joined in the
We crossed the finish line in 6:07 with tears
of joy in our eyes and our hands held together up high. What an amazing feeling
to know that you can go that far on your own steam.
I know our run time wasn’t very good, but we
had such fun! I didn’t know it was possible to laugh for six hours but we
managed to do it and still make it to the end. Thanks go out to the volunteers
at the Wineglass Marathon for treating us so well and putting on a stellar
race! I would definitely recommend this race to others and plan to go back
again next year.
Diane is a proud member of The Tandem Project and Won with
One Triathlon team. For more information, go to www.thetandemproject.org. Questions? Comments?
Email Diane at firstname.lastname@example.org