Love on the Run: Scotland Run Winner Finds Love on his Prize Trip to the Scottish Capital

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American runner Karl Dusen had no idea that his prize for winning the 2008 Scotland Run in New York would be quite such a life changing experience. Karl's race prize was a trip to Scotland to enter the Edinburgh marathon. He explains how the atmosphere and romantic setting of Edinburgh led him and his race partner Emily to fall in love.

Karl Dusen, winner of the Scotland Run in New York's Central Park, April 2008

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American runner Karl Dusen had no idea that his prize for winning the 2008 Scotland Run in New York would be quite such a life changing experience. Karl's race prize was a trip to Scotland to enter the Edinburgh marathon. He explains how the atmosphere and romantic setting of Edinburgh led him and his race partner Emily to fall in love.

"After winning the Scotland Run 10K as part of NYC's Scotland Week, I was awarded a trip for two to come compete in the Edinburgh Marathon. Naturally, I was ecstatic, but I also had to choose a companion amongst some very interested friends and family. I decided to take my friend Emily who was also a runner and enter the Hairy Haggis Team Relay."

"We made our travel arrangements, travelled over from New York, and began a great trip to Edinburgh. We were totally engrossed by the Scottish capital. While strolling through the majestic city streets filled with wonderful shops and restaurants, we were really enjoying each other's company. We were falling in love as we were experiencing the excitement and history of Edinburgh."

"When it came time to race we joined up with our relay partners, Loretta and Beth, and planned our run. I was to lead off before handing off to Emily, followed by Loretta, and then Beth. I started the race off and quickly found myself in the lead. As I ran through Edinburgh I was energized by the passion of the Scottish crowd and the beauty of the city. It propelled me to Emily far ahead of the competition. As I tagged her hand and watch her fly off, I felt blessed to have been able to share this experience with such a lovely woman. I found my way to the finish as the women were each off to great races. Beth crossed the line to make us the 2nd overall team in the relay, and the first mixed team. We were very happy to come over to Scotland and race so well."

"After the race, we celebrated by taking in more of Edinburgh and each other. It would have been hard not to fall in love with Emily here. Spending time with this wonderful woman in this romantic city made for one of the best times in my life. When we got back to New York we were inseparable. On October 13th, in Central Park, I asked Emily to marry me and she said yes! Edinburgh and this marathon will always have a special place in our heart and we hope to come back as much as possible to experience the city and the race again, making more memories."

Editors Notes:

1. The Homecoming Scotland 10k run will this year take place on Saturday 11th April 2009 in Central Park, New York.

2. Race winners for the Homecoming Scotland 10k run this year will receive:

First Male - Guaranteed entry for the Albert Bartlett Edinburgh Marathon, Glasgow, 31st May 2009.
The prize includes a contribution of $1,000.00 towards one pair of economy class return flights from New York to Edinburgh; accommodation, bed & breakfast for two people in Scotland's glorious capital city at the new Hotel du Vin & Bistro, Edinburgh; a champagne lunch or dinner for two people in the Harvey Nichols 'Forth Floor Restaurant', sponsored by Harvey Nichols; Guaranteed entry on 31 May 2009 for two in the Edinburgh Marathon or Hairy Haggis Team Relay, courtesy of Edinburgh Marathon.

First Female - Guaranteed entry for the Great Scottish Run, Glasgow, Sunday 6th September 2009.
This year, the Glasgow Prize celebrates the life and work of the world-renowned artist, designer and architect, Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868 - 1928), as the city prepares to celebrate the Centenary of one of its most iconic buildings, The Glasgow School of Art, designed by Mackintosh.

The prize includes a contribution of $1,000.00 towards one pair of economy class return flights from New York to Glasgow; a 'Glasgow Mackintosh Weekend' package with three nights stay in the exclusive Hotel du Vin at One Devonshire Gardens in the city's prestigious West End. Hotel with bed and breakfast and dinner included on one night, all sponsored by Hotel du Vin; Mackintosh Experience Bus Tour tickets x 2; VIP Afternoon tea for two at the Willow Tea Rooms in Sauchiehall Street; Guaranteed entry for two in the Great Scottish Run (half marathon) or 10K on Sunday 6th September 2009, courtesy of Culture & Sport Glasgow.

3. The Homecoming Scotland 10k Run is part of a programme of activities celebrating Scotland Week 2009. Scotland Week is organized by the Scottish Government, Scottish Development International, and VisitScotland. This year's programme includes Scottish Ministerial visits and meetings with key business organisations to support economic development opportunities; develop new strategic relationships and promote Scotland as a good place to live, work, study, visit, do business and invest.

4. Homecoming 2009 will be a key theme throughout Scotland Week events. 2009 marks the 250th anniversary of the birth of our national poet and cultural icon Robert Burns, whose message of friendship and 'Auld Lang Syne' lives on. Burns is the inspiration behind the year-long celebration of some of Scotland's great contributions to the world: Golf, Whisky, Great minds and Innovation, Burns himself, and our rich culture, heritage and ancestry. Whether you have Scots ancestry or simply a passion for our great nation, 2009 will be an exceptional year to visit Scotland.

5. See more information on Homecoming 2009 and Scotland Week 2009 Events from the gateway site to Scotland, http://www.scotland.org

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