Miami Marathon brings thousands to Bayfront Park

Saidi Makula of Tanzania won the Lifetime Miami Marathon on Sunday, bringing in a $4,500 prize for his time of 2 hours and 21 minutes, besting thousands who participated in the 26.2-mile course that ran through Downtown, Miami Beach and Coconut Grove before returning to the start near Bayfront Park.

Through a translator, Makula said he “trained for three months on a series of hills and flats, while maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle.” He is hoping to represent his country in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and the Miami race was part of his preparation. 

On Friday and Saturday, runners picked up their race kits at an expo event held at Mana Wynwood. Also Saturday, a 5k warm-up event was held, with the course passing by the Port of Miami and ending in South Beach.

Though many ran to win, others competed to raise awareness of particular issues.

Oscar Ortiz said he runs in honor of his son, Sebastian Ortiz, who died in 2016 of cancer. Now on his seventh marathon, Ortiz said he uses the event to help raise money for pediatric cancer charities. 

This annual event, which started in 2003, has grown each year, organizers said.

Carolina Sauer is a Miami-based journalist and producer with a bachelor's degree in communications and a minor in hospitality management from Florida International University. She recently graduated from S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University where she received a master's degree in communications with a concentration in journalism and innovation. Sauer holds her greatest strengths in media and production. She has a niche for communicating with variety of audiences and tailoring to specific markets.

Julia Tsairis is a senior broadcast journalism student at Florida International University. She was born and raised in Miami. Her passion for journalism started out very young as a simple hobby and has blossomed. In addition to her work as a journalist, she enjoys photography and videography and has won many awards for her work. She also enjoys networking in the FIU community. Julia looks forward to achieving her ultimate goal of being able to travel the world, using journalism to help expose the injustices that occur in other countries.