Chico Marathon Anniversary Celebration
March 3 will mark the 35th Anniversary of Guru's first marathon race. On Saturday, March 1, in Jamaica, NY, we are planning to have a Marathon/ Fun Run to pay tribute to Guru's first marathon which he ran in Chico, California on March 3, 1979. I believe some of the Californian disciples will go to Chico and run the race there this weekend also as they have done in past years.
As one project to honour Guru's 50th Anniversary of coming to the West we want to have at least 50 people participate in the Marathon/ Fun Run for Guru's Chico marathon. Last night by the end of our Wednesday night meditation function I signed up our 50th participant. Most of the participants will be doing at least 3 laps (2.6 miles or a tenth of a marathon) or more. There will be about 13 people running the full marathon distance. Some of the partial marathoners will have combined mileage teams, each of which will total a marathon distance of 26.2 miles. Some people will come and walk a few laps as well to get into the spirit of honouring Guru's marathon achievements.
We have been holding this event every year since the late 90's. Guru himself would come by to watch for a while, many years ago. This year will be the largest field of participants even though it will be quite cold on Saturday morning, about 0 C or 32F, the freezing point. Remembering how seriously Guru took his marathon training and racing even through the cold winters in New York gives us the inspiration, strength and courage to get out there and brave the elements and overcome the hurdles of such an event. The course is the usual two-mile course around Jamaica High School which has two challenging but short hills on every lap. A full marathon is 30 and 2/3's laps, so that is a total of 61 hills in the full marathon!
Along with this Marathon/ Fun Run, we also have T-shirts to celebrate the occasion and special Prasad for the evening function where we will also sing some of Guru's marathon songs. I am saving some of the beautiful T-shirts for those visitors who may want to purchase one during April Celebrations as well. Let me know if you want to reserve one. The sizes are small, medium, large and extra-large. We also have a few long sleeve shirts as well. Proceeds go to the SCMT.
So in the spirit of the marathon and Guru’s great achievements in this field of physical endeavour, here is one of Guru’s inspiring poems:
“Just start your inner race
Without waiting to see
Who else is ready to run with you.
When others see you have reached your goal,
They will also be inspired to run.”
Sri Chinmoy, ‘The Outer Running and the Inner Running’