OLD TOWN — For teachers, police officers, science fans and just plain running enthusiasts, Pi Day was an opportunity to take part in a 3.14-mile evening run Thursday.
The Illinois Science Council teamed with Fleet Feet Sports in Old Town for the first ever Pi Day Pi K Fun Run, which capped the maximum at exactly 314 runners and fittingly started at the Benjamin Franklin Statue in Lincoln Park at 6:28 p.m. (roughly 2 pi). The course was slightly longer than a traditional 5K, which covers a measly 3.12 miles.
Manley High School geometry teacher Erin Unander went all in for Pi Day, bringing in pies to her Lawndale classroom and joining in on the run Thursday night.
"They think I'm crazy," she said when asked what her students thought of the day.
At the finish line, Fleet Feet Sports had a supply of pies — regular and pizza — waiting for the runners along with cold beer, water and T-shirts with a large pi symbol on the front.
"The idea is just to call attention to the importance of math in our life," said Monica Metzler, executive director of the Illinois Science Council.
The council, an independent non-profit, seeks to engage, educate and entertain adults about science, technology, engineering and math.
"From astrology to zoology and everything in between," Metzler said. "Everybody has a science secret."
For most runners who came out Thursday, some in homemade Pi Day shirts, geometry and math was their science secret. But others such as Dave Berry were in it for the shirt.
"I run for the T-shirts," he said.