Runners made their way to the starting line of the 42nd annual Cowtown Marathon before dawn Sunday.
“It’s been a long journey. It’s been tough but very, very rewarding,” said Rhonda Foulds of Justin.
This is Foulds’ 100th marathon but running is not her greatest challenge. She was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease over 20 years ago and says running is her way to fight back.
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“Prior to me starting to exercise, I couldn't walk I could barely hold up my body weight,” she said. “So I've become not a burden to my family or society by taking care of myself and running every day.”
More than 25,000 people participated in this year's event, which is expected to bring in a reported $10.4 million to the city this weekend.
Participants of all ages came from all 50 states and 16 countries, some of them last-minute registrants after the Tokyo Marathon was canceled because of the coronavirus.
“We have a lot of runners that live in the United States and have been training, our race happens to be the same weekend as Tokyo,” said the marathon's Executive Director Heidi Swartz. “We are also a Boston qualifier, so they have now opted to come here since the Tokyo one was canceled.”
This year, organizers introduced a new four-person relay. Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price participated with three of her friends -- the mayors of Kennedale, Lubbock and Mansfield.
“Cowtown grows and grows and it's a great opportunity for us to showcase our city and the region and it's really fun,” Price said.