The crowd squeezing together Saturday morning under the awnings near the Wilma Theater attempted to stay out of the rain just prior to the 5k portion of the Missoula Marathon weekend,

Race organizer with Run Wild Missoula, Anders Brooker, was pleased with the steady rain that was falling in downtown Missoula.

"Beautiful morning!" Brooker exclaimed. "First year ever we've had rain. Everybody was worried about heat but now we've got rain..we'll take it. It could be 100 degrees outside, but instead it's 75 and cool. Just stay positive and have fun."

Brooker said thousands will be participating through the weekend of running.

"We're going to have about 7,000 folks throughout the whole weekend," he said. "We had a great beer run last night with 400 to 500 people. We've got about 1,200 people in the 5k and then he full and the half marathons are full again this year.It's getting bigger and better each year. We can't control the participation. It's awesome."

The half marathon was capped at 4,000 runners, while the marathon was capped at 1,750. In 2010, the Missoula Marathon won the Best Marathon in United States award by Runner’s World Magazine. In 2011, the Missoula Marathon was named the Best Tourism Event by the state of Montana.

Brooker's advice for running in the rain?

"Just pretend like you're a kid and hit every mud puddle!" he said.

In 2014, Alaskan Matt Adams broke the Montana marathon record, running the fastest time ever in the state.