News and notes from Fredericksburg's entertainment scene
Historic Half: ‘Biggest Loser’ host Alison Sweeney will join runners
BY EMILY FREEHLING
Fresh off the finale of her 10th season of NBC’s weight-loss reality show “The Biggest Loser,” host and soap star Alison Sweeney will be in Fredericksburg this weekend for Sunday’s fifth running of the Marine Corps Historic Half race.
Sweeney is similar to last year’s celebrity guest, Drew Carey, in that she’s a famous person who has struggled openly with being overweight in a world where many celebrities seem to live in an effortless—and unrealistic—state of skinniness.
In addition to hosting “The Biggest Loser,” Sweeney has played Sami Brady on NBC’s “Days of Our Lives” since she was 16.
In 2011 she published “The Mommy Diet,” a book offering advice to new moms on how to stay healthy during pregnancy and safely lose baby weight after childbirth.
Sweeney has a 6-year-old son and a 2-year-old daughter. She lives in Los Angeles with her kids and husband Dave, a California Highway Patrol officer.
On the West Coast, Sweeney has participated in numerous events involving the U.S. Marines, and Marine Corps Marathon spokeswoman Tami Faram said that tie led Historic Half organizers to start talking to her about being a special guest for this year’s fifth anniversary of the race.
“Alison has been on television for many years, but she also has struggled with her weight and has been very open about it,” Faram said, adding that organizers are interested in bringing in celebrities who can help people learn more about physical fitness.
Sweeney will fire the starting pistol at the race, which starts at 7 a.m. Sunday. Then she’ll jump in line with the nearly 8,000 runners expected to compete in the 13.1-mile competition.
After the race she’ll jet off to participate in the live finale of Donald Trump’s “Celebrity Apprentice” as an invited guest. So, if you want to see Sweeney while she’s in town, you’ll have to catch her either on the race course or at the opening ceremonies, which begin at 6:30 a.m. on Carl D. Silver Parkway in Celebrate Virginia, near the Fredericksburg Expo & Conference Center.
This is Sweeney’s second half- marathon. She completed her first full marathon in March. Joining her from the cast of “The Biggest Loser” is contestant Lauren Lee, of Poolesville, Md. Lee will run the race with her mother, Gail, who was her partner during the “Biggest Loser” competition. She is training to run the Marine Corps Marathon in October.