Thousands take part in the 30th Great Aloha Run - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Thousands take part in the 30th Great Aloha Run

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Image Source: Tracy Gruenert & Jonathan Billings Image Source: Tracy Gruenert & Jonathan Billings
Thomas Puzey winner 2014 Great Aloha Run Thomas Puzey winner 2014 Great Aloha Run
Women's Division Winner: Polina Carlson Women's Division Winner: Polina Carlson
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

More than 21,000 participants took part Monday morning in the 30th Annual Great Aloha Run.

Organizers were concerned that wet weather would dampen the day and leave the 8.15-mile course under water.

"The course might be a little hazardous, a little slippery so that could slow me down," said runner Ron Lynch of Honolulu.

However, Mother Nature cooperated as the forecasted heavy rain never materialized. What did materialize was hundreds of thousands of dollars for our community.

"This year we hope to give away close to $500,000 to 50 organizations and the military and we want to thank the people of Hawaii because without them it wouldn't happen," said race organizer Carole Kai.

Over the past 29 years, more than $10 million has been distributed to more than 150 charities.

The first runner into Aloha Stadium was Thomas Puzey of Flagstaff, Arizona with a time of 43:02.

"I've run it maybe 7 or 8 times and this is the first time I've won it, It's about time." said Puzey. "I don't think I've ever run it with this much rain before and it made things a little bit slower. It made it a little harder to get good traction on the road."

Six minutes later Kailua resident Polina Carlson crossed the finish line to win the women's division.

Lonnie Hicks won the wheelchair division with a finish time of 41:12.

If you would like to see more of how the runners handled the elements, we've got dozens of pictures in three slideshows on our website, HawaiiNewsNow.com.

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