CORNING – The finishing medals so many runners work hard to earn in the Wineglass Marathon are winning some awards of their own. The glass medals created at Hands-On Glass Studio in Corning were recently included in Marathon & Beyond's round-up of the Top 25 Medals of 2012.

"A lot of the reward is getting the feedback from the runners," said Rodi Rovner, owner of Hands-On Glass Studio. "Hearing how much these medals mean to them is really rewarding. The list is a bonus."

Rovner hears countless stories of appreciate from runners every year. Last year, a woman from California told her she could run a race a lot closer to her home, but she came all the way to Corning because she wanted the glass medallion. It has also served as motivation for some runners. The final runner to cross the finish line told Rovner she wanted to give up, but thought about the glass piece and knew she had to finish to earn one.

Marathon & Beyond makes it their goal to see all 500 marathon finishing medals each year, via pictures submitted by race directors. 2012's medals were called the "most inventive of all time."

Last year's Wineglass Marathon finishing medal took 11th place on the list printed in the May/June 2013 issue. Here's what judge Marshall Ulrich had to say about it: "With the cool-blue, delicate glass look, this is one of my favorites that could be proudly worn as a special piece of jewelry."

The Wineglass Marathon finishing medals were also included in the Marathon & Beyond list in 2011.

Other finishing medals that topped the list included such races as Disney, Miami, Route 66, and Newport, which was also made of local glass.

"Making the top 25 out of 500 marathon medals speaks volumes as to how unique and special our glass medals are," said Sheila Sutton, co-director of the Wineglass Marathon. "And having our 2012 marathon medal on the cover of Marathon & Beyond is a true honor."

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