BOONE — Participants from all walks of life made sure to train, stretch and hydrate before running the grueling .0333K Jimmy Smith Run on Sept. 27.

More than 500 people flocked to downtown Boone for the second annual “maranon” event and street party, said Mark Freed, the town of Boone’s cultural resources director. The maranon is like a marathon, but the course is only a 333-foot fun run around the Jimmy Smith Park track.

The event was sponsored by the Downtown Boone Development Association, Mast General Store and the Boone Area Chamber of Commerce.

Freed explained that several years ago students from Appalachian State University created a comical music video about the small size of the park, pointing out the “three rocks and three benches” in the area. The maranon is a way to “poke some fun at ourselves” while getting the community to gather together, said Downtown Development Coordinator Lane Moody.

Serving as the person who signaled the start of each race, Moody said the maranon was a fun opportunity for sportsmanship, camaraderie and “fun times” in the downtown area.

In addition to the run, the event offered food trucks, a beer garden, live music and games. Freed said those in attendance gave a resounding request for more street-type festivals downtown. He said community members, people from App State and visitors seemed to have a good time.

“It was great to see the community come together,” Freed said.

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