The Atlanta Marathon Sunday will send 2,500 runners through scenic Atlanta neighbhorhoods, including several in Buckhead.
The Atlanta Track Club race, long run on Thanksgiving Day, will begin and end at Atlantic Station in Midtown, starting at 7 a.m.
After going through Virginia-Highland and Morningside, the course, used for the first time this year, will loop around to Buckhead and down Peachtree to return to Atlantic Station.
One Vinings man who is very much looking forward to the race is Gerald Schaefer, who 12 years ago at the age of 29 was diagnosed with Type I diabetes.
Type I diabetics need to inject insulin several times each day since their pancreas no longer produces insulin naturally. The disease, also known as juvenile diabetes, is generally diagnosed in children and teenagers, but can strike at any time in a person's life.
“Last year, my wife and I did a 5K walk in downtown Atlanta as part of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF)'s Walk to Cure Diabetes,’’ said Schaefer. “We enjoyed the event and were able to raise a good bit of money. This year, I decided to up the ante and run a marathon to raise money for the JDRF.’’
This will be his second marathon, but his first since being diagnosed with diabetes.
“Despite the sweltering Atlanta heat this summer, my training has gone extremely well,'' he said. "My goal is to beat my prior marathon time and I am determined to do it and will not let diabetes stop me."
Donations can also be made here by searching for the last name ‘Schaefer.’
In addition to the marathon, the event will also feature a four-person marathon relay with relay leg distances ranging from four to eight miles, according to an announcement.
The race also includes the "adopt a marathon mile" program, involving 18 metro nonprofit organizations. Each nonprofit adopted a mile along the course, providing volunteers for aid stations and to cheer the runners along.
An organization will receive a base donation of $3,500 and can receive bonus points to increase the amount to $7,500. For a list of participating organizations, see http://www.atlantamarathon.org/event-info/adopt-a-mile.
- Patch Editor Louis Mayeux contributed to this story.