Kingwood Marathon helps runners ring in the New Year
- Written by Emma Weaver Sobey
Runners from across Texas and beyond converged on Kingwood to celebrate the new year by taking part in the 12th Annual Texas Marathon in Green Tree Village on New Year’s Day. The marathon, which has gained a significant following among runners across the world, has become a New Year’s Day tradition in Kingwood since its conception in 1999. The marathon organizers, Paula and Steve Boone, first created the Texas Marathon in 1999 as a way to help seasoned marathoner Rick Worley earn the Guiness Book of Worlds Records record for the most marathons on consecutive weekends. The event helped Worley set the record by running 200 marathons in 159 consecutive weekends. Tragically, Worley, a Kingwood resident, was killed in a traffic accident in July. The Boones hosted this year’s marathon in his memory. His legacy of finishing 299 marathons in his lifetime is remembered by marathoners everywhere. The Texas Marathon, a Boston qualifier, is a highly anticipated event for many marathoners. Six hundred fifty runners showed up to run the 26.2-mile run that circled the lake and utilized the Kingwood greenbelt. Signs of encouragement and volunteers were stationed along the course to help motivate the runners. Prizes were given out to everyone who finished either the full marathon or the half marathon and included T-shirts, a rubber duck with the finishing position’s number on its neck, and a finisher medal. Additional prizes were also provided by the sponsor of the event, Metal Sawing Technology. The finisher medal for the event is considered unique for marathoners, not only because of its large size, but also for its unique Texas shape. Among the runners, hometown hero Jeremy Mullenix and his wife, Angela, and daughter, Ally, all took part in the event. Mullennix is a graduate of Kingwood High School and a seasoned runner who has been competing in marathons for the last six years. He is presently serving in the United States military and recently returned from his seventh tour in Iraq. He’s been awarded a Medal of Valor for his service in the military. Mullennix sees running marathons as a way to spend time with his family when he is on leave. His daughter, Ally, is a student in Kingwood and recently completed a Junior Triathlon. The Texas Marathon was her first half-marathon. For the Mullennix family, spending time together, enjoying the beautiful weather and the scenery was a great way to ring in the new year together. “We all finished at the same time,” Mullennix said. “We waited for each other to finish so that we could do that. It was a lot of fun.” The Texas Marathon is a yearly event that keeps growing. The temperate weather, lovely scenery and friendly Kingwood natives help make each year a success. Photo: The Mullennix Family shared a happy and healthy New Year’s Day at the Texas Marathon. The prizes and medals make the Texas Marathon popular among runners everywhere.