Mary Rice-Boothe

Marathon Kids 25th Anniversary Campaign

I live in a predominantly white neighborhood outside of Austin, Texas. One morning, while I was out for a 3 1/2-mile run around my usual neighborhood loop, I realized I was being followed by a police sheriff and came across his vehicle three times in that short run. It ended with him following me all the way back to my house, and only when I stopped there did he pass me. I did slow down during my run to take note of the car and license plate number for my own safety, in case something did arise. Even pre-COVID-19, I’ve also had similar interactions with residents in the neighborhood, whether it’s people not waving back or making eye contact, or very obviously moving across the street when they see me coming, even though I make it a point to wave, smile, and wear brightly colored shirts so that people are very much aware that I’m a runner. I also see hardly anyone who looks like me and don’t see much diversity at all when I line up at large and small races in the Austin area. When it comes to overt racism, incidents like Ahmaud Arbery’s murder are unfortunately not new. I’ve been having conversations about racism with my kids, who are five and 14, for years. Unfortunately, that’s part of being a black person in the United States. I was already cautious as a runner, but this brings it to the forefront to be even more cautious and even more alert than I’ve always been. Ultimately, running is an escape that benefits both my mental and physical health. For us to be able to continue to share that space, no matter what we look like, there needs to be a more conscious effort to diversify the scene. I continue to run even after being followed, and I continue to go to races in the Austin area even in predominantly white spaces because I feel that my just being alive is a political act. Although my voice isn’t necessarily always amplified, and I’m not seen as your “typical runner,” I won't give up my space. I still think it’s important to still seize what I feel is still an important part of who I am and an important part of my identity. Even if I may feel vulnerable at times when I’m running alone, I’m not going to stop running just because I don’t fit a particular set of characteristics. I think the moment that we have now is an opportunity to have more people, especially our white allies and co-conspirators, as I like to call them, be more active in questioning how to make our country more equitable... I think it’s important for white folks to read the books, develop the language, and engage in conversation, but I also want them to do something, to take risks and put their privilege on the line for someone else. As a Board member of Marathon Kids, I am working to make running programs accessible to ALL kids! I appreciate your donation and look forward to a running community that truly reflects everyone.

 

$1,988 Raised of $10,000 Goal

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In 25 years, Marathon Kids has transformed the lives of more than two and a half million kids. Our main goal is inclusivity. We partner with Title 1 and disadvantaged schools and communities first. We wish for all kids, no matter their difference, to feel included, welcomed, and have access to fun, supportive, and educational physical activities. 

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Top Fundraisers

Marathon Kids Board

Cami Hawkins

As the CEO and a Board Member of Marathon Kids I have set a personal fundraising goal of $10,000 for the 25th Anniversary. As the mother of two (now grown!) Marathon Kids I appreci

$5,819

Marathon Kids Board

Chris McClung

I have been volunteering with Marathon Kids since 2004, and my passion for their mission continues to grow. We have introduced running to over 2.5 million kids since 1995, and we a

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Marathon Kids Board

Marcy Greer

Join me for Marathon Kids Run Wild this spring! I am challenging my friends and colleagues from the legal community to sign up, donate, and get moving! Register solo, start a team,

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Marathon Kids Board

Mary Rice-Boothe

I live in a predominantly white neighborhood outside of Austin, Texas. One morning, while I was out for a 3 1/2-mile run around my usual neighborhood loop, I realized I was being f

$1,987

Thank You Donors!

In Memory of Billy R. Rice

December 30, 2020

$2,081

Marathon Kids

WE ARE ON A MISSION TO GET KIDS MOVING. Through running, we show kids they can achieve more than they ever thought possible and put them on the path to healthier lives. Our organization is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization with the IRS. Donations are fully tax-deductible within the guidelines of the U.S law.