Marathon change is a money grab

In response to the change of the Whidbey Marathon and Half Marathon race (News-Times, Jan. 12) which plans to “skip” Coupeville this year: I am so disappointed to see that Coupeville will not be the final destination of this race. My daughter from San Francisco and my sister from San Mateo, Calif., and friends have been walking this event for the last two years and we were making it a “happening” event and challenge for our family.

Since we live in Coupeville, it was a wonderful end to the race; the last several miles down Madrona were so peaceful and serene that you never thought for one minute you were not going to make it. We went to Toby’s for lunch afterwards.

There are several things that I would like to dispute. When Jill Johnson, Chamber of Commerce for Oak Harbor, said that “it’s a huge exposure for people who are new to the marathon to have it in Oak Harbor,” actually, they are only “exposing” the north half of the island and we all know there are a number of wonderful destinations throughout the island, besides Oak Harbor.

Why didn’t Oak Harbor let Coupeville know that there would be a change in venue? For our little town, this is huge! Also the problems that Race Director John Kaiser, mentions, like people walking three abreast, this is going to happen in any race, please, give me a break.

This really is a political issue of Oak Harbor trying to get more money for their town, plain and simple.

Joan Chochon


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