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A revealing finish: Omaha couple find out gender of 2nd baby at end of Lincoln Marathon

A revealing finish: Omaha couple find out gender of 2nd baby at end of Lincoln Marathon

The newest runner in the Herr family is a boy.

The Omaha couple found out the gender of their second child at the finish line of the Lincoln Marathon on Sunday.

Stephanie Herr, 29, signed up for the race’s half marathon a few days before finding out she was pregnant. The timing lined up that she and her husband could find out the gender on race day.

Race director Nancy Sutton said she’s seen finish-line proposals. Wheelchair participants have stood and walked across the finish, and families have pushed elderly grandparents across.

But this is the first gender reveal hosted at the marathon finish line, Sutton said.

Organizers are happy to help participants pull off those feats. Before the race, only marathon volunteers and the couple’s doctor knew the gender of the baby.

“It feels like we’re not just a huge marathon. We’re more human,” Sutton said. “We take care of our runners. We care about them as people. The winner is very important, but it’s stories like this that just grab your heart.”

Herr and husband Colin are parents to 11-month-old Chandler. They did a smaller reveal when finding out his gender. Surrounded by family, they sliced into a cake that was blue inside.

The Herrs ran the 13.1-mile race through Lincoln together. Stephanie Herr sported a shirt that read “Pink or Blue?” across the front. The back had pink and blue footprints emblazoned on it along with “follow to find out who.”

As they crossed the finish line inside Memorial Stadium, race organizers handed over medals and tubes of confetti. When the couple cracked them open, they were met with blue confetti. Both sets of grandparents were waiting, too.

Herr has tackled three full marathons and three half marathons. Knowing the gender reveal was ahead made those last grueling 3 miles a little easier to endure, Herr said.

“It’s a little bit of extra motivation there,” she said.

Hopefully baby follows in mom and dad’s running shoes.

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It isn’t unusual in larger cities to see marathons stacked one after another on the running calendar, said Rich Harshbarger, CEO of Running USA, a national trade association. But it’s surprising to see the stacked marathon schedule in a market like Omaha, with fewer than a million people in its metro area, Harshbarger said. Especially in light of race registration numbers dropping nationally.

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