Every state in the U.S. and 16 foreign countries are being represented this weekend in what could be the biggest marathon race in Texas.
The Cowtown Marathon is preparing for the big weekend of events and multiple races in Fort Worth. The 10K and 5K are planned for Saturday while the much anticipated marathon is planned for Sunday.
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More than 24,000 people have signed up for the races. The Kids 5K, Adults 5K and Full Marathon have reached their capacity and are sold out.
While it’s not the most they’ve ever had in the past 42 years of the marathon, we're told it’s definitely the biggest in the last five years.
They’ve sold out in all the races and that’s a good thing. Cowtown officials reminded us why that’s important: The Cowtown C.A.L.F. Program
“All the proceeds from this race benefit the kids of North Texas, So that’s the most important thing, we’ve given out over 42,000 pairs of shoes to kids in North Texas in the past 11 years. These kids have never had a new pair of shoes before and we’re getting them shoes," said Heidi Swartz, executive director of The Cowtown Marathon.
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Here’s why Cowtown is seeing an uptick in those numbers. It happens to be the same weekend of the Tokyo Marathon — which was canceled last week because of coronavirus fears.
It sent 35,000 people scrambling to find an alternative. The Tokyo Marathon was a qualifier for those wanting to participate in next year's Boston Marathon. Luckily, the Cowtown Marathon is qualifier, which has caused officials to receive an influx in calls from out of town runners looking for space.
One of those runners is Richardson runner Mike Nutting, who had been training for Tokyo since October.
He had to cancel his entire trip at the last minute but didn’t want his 6 months of training to go to waste.
“The first thing that I did when I found out the race was going to be canceled was, what races are happening in the country, anywhere on this day?" he said. "And luckily, there was the Cowtown in Fort Worth. I thought wow, why didn’t I sign up for that in the first place? It’s only 30 minutes away!”
“I called the first chance I had to see if there was space open. And not only did they say there was space open, it felt like it was a big virtual hug. They said, ‘here’s a discount, go! We’re gonna take care of you and make sure you have the race you’ve been training for.”
Those discounts were offered to other Tokyo Marathon runners.
Cowtown Marathon details
Packet pick up starts Friday morning at 11:30 a.m. Call 817-207-0224 for more information.
You don’t have to be in the race to be a part of this.The expo hall kicks off Friday at Will Rogers Memorial Center with vendors and people are encouraged to come out and support the runners.
Neighborhood parties, live music and other festivities are planned along the route. Click here to see the route map.
Saturday, Feb. 29 - 7 a.m. CST - 10K
Saturday, Feb. 29 - 8:30 a.m. CST - Adults 5K
Saturday, Feb. 29 - 9:30 a.m. CST - Cowtown Kids 5K presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors
Sunday, March 1 - 7 a.m. CST - Ultra Marathon, Marathon, Healthy Hig Relay, Half Marathon