Country Music Marathon runners ask officials about security - News, Weather & Sports

Country Music Marathon runners ask officials about security


Security at the upcoming St. Jude Country Music Marathon was a big topic of concern for runners who gathered for a pre-race meeting with officials Thursday.

The popular annual marathon is just a little more than a week away, and while the bombings at the Boston Marathon remain on everyone's mind, it's not keeping local runners from the sport they love.

At Fleet Feet in Brentwood, runners got a chance to ask questions from those in charge.

"Are there any security changes we need to let friends and family be aware of?" asked runner Mary Pat Fulkerson.

Fulkerson is ready to run in her first Country Music Marathon, and she wants to know how race organizers are going to be prepared.

"The nation, as a community, has been rocked by the events in Boston," Fulkerson said. "This race, it does cause you to stop and think."

However, Fulkerson said she wasn't going to let what happened at the Boston Marathon scare her away.

"This is for fun, and this is such an exciting time. But there is also evil in this world," she said.

Race organizers know security will be a concern for many of the runners, spectators and volunteers.

"Our event director and staff are meeting with Metro Police and other agencies this weekend to develop a plan for security," said Karen Bingham, with the County Music Marathon.

Cathy Stone is ready to participate in her eighth County Music Marathon.

"This has always been a safe event, and I don't think anything will be any different," she said.

The Country Music Marathon is one of the largest marathons in the nation, according to race organizers, with nearly 32,000 people registered so far.

Peter Pressman is originally from Boston and now serves as president of the Nashville Striders Running Club.

"A finish line is not suppose to be a crime scene," Pressman said.

His last Boston Marathon was in 2006, but he said his heart was with those who ran on Monday.

"It was completely heart-wrenching and painful to watch as the event continued to unfold," he said.

Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson said earlier in the week authorities have received no word of a threat aimed at Nashville's marathon, but the FBI confirmed as it investigates Boston it will pass along some intelligence to law enforcement in Nashville in a push for safety and peace of mind.

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