Port Arthur News
More than 1,000 runners and walkers, young and young at heart, made their way down Beaumont streets during the Fourth Annual Gusher Marathon on Saturday.
Participants stretched and jogged in place while warming-up prior to the event and well wishers found spots near Lamar University’s Montagne Center, some of which held signs supporting their family member or friend.
Justin Donovan, a senior at Nederland High School, stood with his mother, Joanne Donovan and grandmother, Sheila Matson, and watched as the first group of runners zoomed past. Justin was preparing to participate in the 5K portion of the marathon then afterward take part in a high school track event in Bridge City. He has taken part in the marathon since its inception four years ago.
“I find it relaxing to run and you accomplish more,” Justin Donovan said.
His mother said she was proud and excited.
“He won last year (5K( and he’s hoping to win again this year, back to back. We’re so proud of him,” Sheila Donovan said. “It’s motivating to watch.”
Justin Donovan ended the 5K with a time of 18:26 and was in the first batch of runners at the finish line.
The Gusher Marathon included a half-marathon and 5K.
Sandra Hebert, at 28-weeks pregnant with her first child, was participating in her fourth Gusher 5K and her husband, Ryan, was taking part in his first 5K. The mom-to-be said she has adjusted her pace because of the pregnancy by slowing down and decreasing her mileage but looked forward to the run. She explained the lure of running.
“It’s the feeling you get, motivation and drive,” Sandra Hebert said. “What they say about the runners high is very true.”
Dad-to-be Ryan Hebert said he was participating in order to get in shape for their baby, a daughter.
Vendors lined the front of the Montagne Center and a stage was set-up where music was played an announcements made. Canopies dotted the area featuring offers and providing information about different running clubs.
For more information about the Gusher Marathon go to the gushermarathon.com or the Facebook page.