One of the most popular events during National Tom Sawyer Days is the Hannibal Cannibal Race.  Pleasant conditions greeted walkers and runners in downtown Hannibal this morning as the 22nd annual Hannibal Cannibal got underway at 7 a.m.

The race has something for nearly everyone, with a 5-10-15K Run or a 5K Walk. Race Director Angie Wilcoxson says approximately 1800 people entered the competition.

The course winds through the downtown area and over the 3rd Street overpass to Highway 79.  Part of the challenge involves traversing the formidable Lover's Leap Hill. The grueling incline is said to be the reason for naming the race the "Cannibal", as it will "eat you up"!

Wilcoxson says proceeds from the event will help fund new diagnostic technology through the Cherish Campaign.  She says womens' health care programs have been expanded with the addition of digital mammography, enhanced bone density scanning, and more.

After the main event, a Kids Fun Run drew nearly 200 participants. As the kids pounded the pavement along North Main Street, a large audience was present to cheer them on. Proceeds from the Kids Fun Run go to programs at the Hannibal Childrens’ Center.

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