Triathlon Makes July 4th Comeback

By Cristina Frank

July 4, 2012 Updated Jul 5, 2012 at 10:37 AM EST

Town of Union, NY (WBNG Binghamton) More than 100 people turned out for a micro-triathlon tradition that had been absent from the community for years.

It was a part of the community for 20 years and then it just stopped.

Now Wednesday morning, competitors took the start line for a race that would take them 10 miles by water and land.

It's 250 yards in the pool, biking 6.6 miles and then a 1.5 mile run.

"Your body is telling you to give up but you got to push through it," Triathlete Parrish Bridges said.

It's the Highland Park Micro Triathlon on the nation's birthday.

And this year, it's a comeback.

"After a several year hiatus - this was a several year tradition here in Highland Park. So, being that it was coming back I definitely wanted to be involved with it and be able to race the first one....on July 4th, " competitor JC Colling said.

Organizers said for an extra challenge, they added some hills to the course.

And instead of an open-water swim, like most races.

"It's very strange. In seven years of doing triathlon, I've never done a pool swim. They've always been lakes....it was a different sort of feel," Colling said.

The race's director says with help from the Town of Union, they decided this year was the time to bring it back and hope it will grow.

"Adults we're looking at 40-plus, hopes to be near 100, like we used to be. Children, we should be in the neighborhood of 60 to 70. One time we were 300 and we hope to get back to those numbers also," Race Director Dan Adrian said.

It coincides with the Town's 4th of July extravaganza.

While it takes a lot of strength and endurance to power through this race....on the nation's 236th birthday, racers said it's about the USA.

"Of the men and women of our armed forces who are serving now, who have served in the past and certainly those who paid the ultimate price to secure our freedom for us," Colling said.

Organizers say they plan to bring the micro-triathlon back next July 4th.

The all-day celebration at Highland Park wraps up with fireworks on July 4th at 9:30 p.m.