It’s a Marinara-thon!

by Mary Smith

There is something really new about to happen at First United Methodist Church of Tulsa. Actually, it’s so new to us, we had to create a word to even talk about it. It’s a Marinara-thon!

[ mar·i·nar·a·thon / noun. a pre-race carbohydrate based, fueling meal for distance runners of the Route 66 marathon events.]

For ten years, Tulsa has hosted the Route 66 Marathon. Each November, thousands of runners descend on the city to run the streets and test their mettle against this challenging course. Next weekend is the eleventh running of this marathon. A new decade is beginning for the Route 66 Marathon—and we are going to be part of it!

On the eve of the marathon, Saturday November 19, we are opening our doors and setting the table for a big-time pasta party. The evening will begin with a catered meal, then after dinner we’ll offer a blessing of the shoes for all the runners who attend. The church has also scheduled a first-time-ever Saturday evening contemporary worship service in our Youth and Family Complex gym. So if you’re running Sunday, or going to be blocked in your neighborhood because of the race course, we’ve got you covered. You don’t have to miss church next weekend because of the marathon.

The evening schedule looks like this:

Saturday November 19

  • 5:00-5:45: Pasta Dinner in Thomas Hall, Main Church Building, 10th & Boulder
  • 5:50: Blessing of the Shoes, Thomas Hall Main church Building, 10th & Boulder
  • 6:00: Regeneration Service, YFC Gym, 11th & Main

For reservations and tickets to the runner’s meal, please visit our website. Dinner seating is limited so don’t wait too long!

So, why are we doing this? Because; hospitality.

[hos·pi·tal·i·ty / noun. the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.]

But, really, why? Why the pasta, why the blessing? Because we realize a couple things. This run has come right through our campus—every year—for ten years straight. This run boasts thousands of runners who come from every state in the nation and several foreign countries. We have a beautiful opportunity to welcome strangers into our home for a meal before one of the most challenging athletic events they will face. We have the chance to feed them, to bless them, and to cheer them on. We don’t want to miss out on connecting with all these people.

The history of the marathon goes back to ancient Greece, when Pheidippides ran the distance from the battlefield at Marathon to Athens.

The future of this marathon goes through our campus, through our city, and into our lives.

Won’t you join us for dinner Saturday night? We can’t wait to see you there!

Mary is a wife and a mother of four who enjoys cycling, running and preparing meals to share with family and friends. On November 20th she is going to #RuntheRoute for the 5th time. You can read her personal posts at http://bikeruncook.blogspot.com . Follow on Instagram @marysgold.

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