The Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival is launching a new event called the UP, UP & AWAY 5K to be held on Saturday, July 29, in tandem with the annual Balloon Classic event on the Kent State University at Stark campus.

Scheduled to start at 8:00 AM, participants can enjoy a 5K course looping the beautiful campus while being surrounded by the excitement of the potential for hot air balloons to both launch from and fly over campus.

This 5K is part of the Ohio Challenge Series, so serious runners who enter with the goal of winning and, therefore, consider it a true “race” are very important to the event. However, we also welcome people who enter either as recreational runners or walkers.

All participants will receive a commemorative shirt and finisher’s medal, and while waiting for the awards ceremony can enjoy a cold beverage and family fun including inflatables for the kids.

There will be prizes, and the top three male and top three female runners will each receive two 10,000 mile travel vouchers from Spirit Airlines.

For more information or to register, visit us online at


While nearly 29,000 men have played in at least one National Football League game, there are only 303 members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame; this number will be increased to 310 during the induction ceremonies on August 5 at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium. The 2017 Class is comprised of kicker Morten Andersen; running back Terrell Davis; safety Kenny Easley; owner, president and general manager Jerry Jones; defensive end Jason Taylor; running back LaDainian Tomlinson; and quarterback Kurt Warner.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame first opened its doors on September 7, 1963, and subsequently has earned a stellar reputation as the “most inspiring place on earth” -- recently welcoming its ten millionth visitor. The Hall has expanded from its original 19,000 square feet to 118,000 square feet following the 2014 conclusion of its $27 million “Future 50” Expansion and Renovation Project. The Pro Football Hall of Fame is a not-for-profit educational institution that focuses on educating, promoting, preserving, and honoring the great individuals and moments that have shaped the sport’s history, with an emphasis on “Celebrating Excellence Everywhere!”

Likewise, the annual Enshrinement Festival has expanded from its original four small events to more than 20 diverse events enjoyed by nearly 700,000 people and producing an economic impact of over $32 million for the Canton/Stark County area and nearly $56 million for the State of Ohio. In addition, millions of people experience aspects of the Enshrinement Festival as events are televised and covered by other media. With a record of success for the past 53 years, the Enshrinement Festival is a true celebration of excellence.

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