Leon's Triathlon, known as "America's Race," will celebrate the United States Armed Forces during the race's opening ceremonies beginning at 7:30 a.m. on Sunday, June 7, at Wolf Lake Memorial Park. Leon Wolek, founder of Leon's Triathlon, has dedicated the opening ceremonies of the event to the military and veterans to show appreciation for their service to our country.


Jim Cornelison, Chicago Blackhawks' national anthem singer, will perform "The Star-Spangled Banner," and the Lucas Oil Skydivers will perform a jump during the ceremony. Additional features of opening ceremonies include presentation of the Garrison flag as well as a 21-gun salute.


"We'd like to invite everyone to come participate in the opening ceremonies so they may show their gratitude to our veterans," stated Wolek.


Leon's Triathlon participants will compete in either an Olympic-distance race, which includes a .9-mile swim, a 24.6-mile biking portion and a 6.2-mile running portion, or a sprint-distance race, which includes a .465-mile swim, 12.5-mile biking portion and a 3.1-mile running portion.


New to this year's event is the addition of the U.S. Armed Forces Military Triathlon National Championship. The finest of the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard will be represented. Each branch will choose their top military team members to compete at Leon's Triathlon. Winners of the Armed Forces triathlon in Hammond will then represent the United States Armed Forces at the Conseil International du Sport Militaire (CISM) Military World Games in South Korea October 2-11, 2015.


The event will be nationally broadcast on Comcast SportsNet during Fourth of July weekend, allowing millions of households across the nation to watch as participants swim, bike and run their way through Northwest Indiana.


During Demo Day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, June 6, Chicago-based nonprofit Dare2tri will be hosting an injured military clinic. The clinic is open to any injured military or veteran with a physical disability, visual impairment, traumatic brain injury, or PTSD. Attendees will receive instruction and clinics in swimming, cycling, running and wheelchair pushing, and transition. There will also be a paratriathlon 101 session to help educate participants about the opportunities in paratriathlon.


Wolf Lake Memorial Park is located at 2398 Calumet Avenue in Hammond. To learn more about Dare2tri and the injured military clinic, visit www.dare2tri.org. For more information on Leon's Triathlon or Demo Day, visit www.leonstriathlon.com.