Community ‘catching on” to marathon success

Monica Bolanos

Top female marathon runner Monica Bolanos

Published: Thursday, November 7, 2013 at 12:10 PM.

The Running for the Bay marathon Oct. 20 posted another successful year, attracting more than 500 runners to the county for the fourth year of the event.

“I think it went super, the best year ever. I’m the eternal optimist,” said organizer Mark Henderson, an Atlanta businessman. “People seem to love the town; they thought everybody was really friendly. The weather was overcast which was in a way perfect for running. A little windy but they thought it was fine.”

The Franklin’s Promise Coalition provided scores of volunteers for the event, and will receive a donation of $2,000 for their efforts. Another $100 will be given to the humane society.

Henderson expressed thanks to the work put in by Joe Taylor, director of Franklin’s Promise, and Anita Grove, director of the Apalachicola Bay Chamber of Commerce, as well as City Administrator Betty Taylor Webb and her staff, Apalachicola Police Chief Bobby Varnes and Capt. Brad Segree from the sheriff’s office.

“I thought the sheriff’s office and police department did a great job. There was a good police presence and assistance,” said Henderson. “It seemed like the community’s catching on that it’s a good thing for the community.”

He said Resort Vacation Properties donated the house where Henderson’s staff stayed.

The marathon has become quite a family affair, with Henderson’s son Kyle, coming in from California to do the announcing, son Jake helping with barricades and cones, daughter Kayte and her fiancé Jonathan managing the turnaround halfway point, where East Bay Shore Drive runs into Island Drive, wife Mary and brother Mary and brother Jim in charge of Saturday’s Runners Expo.

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