Evelyn Sweeney munched on a chicken sandwich Saturday morning after completing her third Quad-City Times Bix 7 race.
Sweeney said she ran "just the two miles," but at 7 years old, her accomplishment is bigger than she gives herself credit for. Running alongside her was Jody Fear, who completed her fourth Bix.
Being a local, Fear said she knew the Bix 7 was the epitome of races but she was terrified to give it a shot. Finally, after a few years, she gave it a try.
"I just was like 'I have to do it once,' so I ran the full Bix on my own," she said. "Since then, what gets me out here is my grandchildren and running with them."
The pair were just two of thousands who flooded into the Quad City Times' parking lot for the after party. The race began at 8 a.m., and by 8:23 a.m., the first round of runners was ready to party. Water, snacks, Popsicles and beers were flowing as the crowds tried their best to re-hydrate after the race.
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Runners entered the parking lot near Third Street, where a long line stretched from the Palmer College of Chiropractic tent. Runners anxiously waited their turn for an adjustment, while others chose to dance with whatever energy they had left.
Not too far away, Morgan Doodlow and Keyondrae Wilkerson, from Cedar Rapids, were cooling off in the shade.
The duo are cross-country runners at Coe College, and first time Quad-City Times Bix 7 runners. Wilkerson is training for cross country season, and has mainly been lifting weights. He's done a few runs, he said, but mostly one and two miles.
Doodlow said the day was a lot of fun, but she did get a bit of a shock when she reached the turnaround point on McClellan Boulevard.
"I didn't know you had to double back," she said with a laugh.
Despite the hiccup, she persevered and finished the race strong. Both said they would run the race again, and are already looking forward to next year. Doodlow said her favorite part was seeing all the Elvis impersonators, and for Wilkerson, the live music.