The inaugural Hero Half Marathon and 10K, presented by the South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority, had more than 300 participants registered from 13 states. Participating runners enjoyed a unique and scenic route that lead them through the Indiana Dunes.

According to race director Crystal Sands, participants got a great view of US 12 in addition to utilizing the Calumet Trail. Sands explained that the Hero Half Marathon and 10K was the first race to use the Calumet Trail, as well as the first race to have a section of US 12 shut down.

"We took Northwest Indiana's number one tourist destination and turned it into a half marathon course that is among the most scenic in the country," said Sands.

Participants who finished in first place through third place in their category, as well as those who finished in first place through third place overall in the races received medals. Participants who finished first in their category received a $100 gift certificate to Albert's Diamond Jewelers.

Speros A. Batistatos, president and CEO of the South Shore CVA, noted that the Hero Half Marathon provided an opportunity to showcase some of the region's assets while numerous groups worked together to provide an exciting event for visitors and residents.

"Northwest Indiana is a diverse region, allowing race organizers the opportunity to develop a truly unique experience for their participants," said Batistatos. "Additionally, with the cooperation of various agencies throughout the region, the success of an event in the South Shore becomes a priority."

The race brought together numerous agencies from across the region supporting the success of the inaugural event. Agencies include the South Shore CVA, Indiana Department of Transportation, Porter County Sheriff's Department, Indiana Dunes State Park and the DNR, Beverly Shores and the Town of Chesterton, the Duneland Chamber of Commerce and the Porter County Parks Department.

The Hero Half Marathon was sponsored by the DNR, Indiana Dunes State Park, Porter County Parks, Duneland Chamber of Commerce, Franciscan Alliance, Superior Ambulance, Strack and Van Til, McDonald's, Dunkin Donuts and the Northwest Indiana Athletic Club.

Volunteers from A Positive Approach to Teen Health, ICE cheer group of Mishawaka and staff from the South Shore CVA assisted with the race.

"It takes a great team to pull off an event like the Hero Half Marathon, and we have to thank our great partners, our dedicated volunteers and all of our sponsors for their support," stated Sands.

For more information on the Hero Half Marathon and 10K, visit www.herohalf.com.