Bitter temperatures and biting wind can’t keep supporters from cheering on racers

Bitter temperatures and biting wind can’t keep supporters from cheering on racers

MARQUETTE — Yoopers are a hardy folk, and there’s perhaps no greater display of that hardiness than a good old fashioned dog race.

The UP 200 has started in downtown Marquette for 26 years and it’s a community favorite. Racers come from all over the country and even Canada to race, and many hope to qualify for the Iditarod in Alaska.

“[With] some of this weather, people start questioning if the race is going to go through or not, and absolutely it is! We haven’t cancelled a dog race yet,” said Ron Hewson, the President of the Upper Peninsula Dog Sled Association, “I work with a lot of other folks on dog races and they all kind of wish they had a set up like Marquette does. They wish they had the support that Marquette does. Even though it’s cold I hope that everyone makes it, keeps with their plans to come on down and cheer everybody on.”

And just as Hewson hoped, supporters turned out in droves.

Racers left the chute at seven Friday evening and will travel nearly 250 miles to Grand Marais. Check in with us Monday, and we’ll bring you the final results from the race.