The Government Gardens was teeming with future athletes as more than 1500 children put foot to asphalt, completing the last 2km of their 40km running challenge.
The Rotorua Mini Marathon was held this morning and saw 1530 primary and intermediate school children run the last kilometres of their challenge along the official Rotorua Marathon course.
Participating children were required to track 40km worth of running in the build up to the event and many had been training for several weeks, Sports Bay of Plenty's Melanie Short said.
"Registered children got their passports and were able to tick off each kilometre they ran leading up to the event. They love being able to track their progress and see how they are doing."
Kids were separated into their year levels and counted down at the start line. Year 8 children went first with each year level following them until the 5-year-olds set off.
Mum Catherine McBeth was at the marathon finish line cheering on her son Benjamin, 12.
She said her children loved anything to do with getting outside and being active.
"This year it was just [Benjamin] taking part but all the kids love this kind of thing and are keen to take part."
Benjamin said it was his third time taking part in the event.
"It's a lot of fun. We do most of the trainings at school in the lead up to this event and then we get to finish off on the actual Rotorua Marathon course - It's pretty cool and gives you a bit of a thrill."
Rebecca Annabell had two children taking part in the challenge.
"They were pretty eager to do it and get it done. They're willing to give almost anything a go."
She said most of their trainings happened at school and "took a bit of motivating" but her children still enjoyed it.
The event was organised as a collaborative project between Event Promotions, Events and Venues, Athletics New Zealand and Sport Bay of Plenty, with the aim of giving more primary school children a taste of the benefits of staying fit and healthy.
Each participant received a Certificate of Completion and the opportunity to take home a spot prize to acknowledge the significant effort from the children.