Texas Athletics to host 16th annual Marathon Kids Kick Off Celebration on Sept. 29
Sept. 25, 2012
AUSTIN, Texas - The 16th annual Marathon Kids Kick Off Celebration for Austin will take place on Saturday, Sept. 29, with UT Athletics playing host to the event for the 13th time. The event will once again be held at Mike A. Myers Stadium, where thousands of Central Texas children and their parents will begin their challenge to run or walk 26.2 miles in increments of a quarter-mile to a half-mile at a time over a six-month period.
The Kick Off event is divided into two sessions, the first at 9 a.m. Central for all Austin ISD children and the second at 11 a.m. for children from all other participating Central Texas school districts. The event is free and parking is free in the Manor Garage, adjacent to Myers Stadium.
UT women's track and field head coach Bev Kearney has been involved with the Marathon Kids program since its inception and is the point person responsible for the event taking place on The University's campus. Hundreds of UT athletics staff, coaches and student-athletes will volunteer their time during Saturday's event.
Marathon Kids is a free, 17-year-old, trademarked, incremental, school and community-based fitness program that began as an Austin grassroots initiative. It is now in Austin, Baltimore, Dallas, El Paso, Houston, Los Angeles and the Rio Grande Valley. The organization also designed its "MKIB" program for smaller towns and cities.
The organization's mission is to build joyful community around children and be quickly accepted into public, private and home schools as a free, innovative, celebratory fitness and nutrition program, resonating with the child and with the child's family. The goal is for the child to develop the love and habit of moving through space and to carry forward the power of muscular, nutritional and psychological well being.
The program's target market is children who are most vulnerable to sedentary lives and type 2 diabetes. In addition to the fitness portion of the program, Marathon Kids challenges the participating children to eat five fruits and vegetables a day for 26.2 days of every month and also partners with local non-profit agencies to help children plant and nurture a schoolyard garden.
Families with questions about Marathon Kids should visit the organization's website (www.MarathonKids.org) or ask their school's physical education teacher about participation.