Marathon Director sets $100,000 goal for arts programs

By Ava

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- A new course and new views of Charleston, for runners trying to make it through to the finish line.

"It's just such a beautiful city, the history and people and all the great restaurants. You know people want to come to the low country," said Race Director Liz Alford.

Alford said each year the marathon raises about $20,000 more than the year before. This year Alford said they've set a bigger goal of $100,000.

"The money we raise goes back to the schools in Charleston County for arts programs. So, we pull a lot of our volunteers from parents and teachers and even the students," said Alford.

Volunteers like Traci Stone and her son Jonathan served as course marshalls, which means they point runners where they need to go. Stone said more money needs to go to supporting the arts.

"I think arts education is so important to all the schools and their need of funding for the arts and this is such a great cause," said Stone.

Stone is also a runner and knows how cheering fans can make the difference in finishing the race.{}

"That cheering that your almost there is like ... it's just wonderful, so important to just hear and have the cheering and the encouragement that you are almost to that finish line," said Stone.

Even in cold temperatures people like Nancy Schneider, help by encouraging runners to the finish line with her cow bell.

"I'm not going to complain, not when these folks are running as far as they are," said Schneider.

When they cross the finish line a medal is waiting for them.

"Sometimes you know you need to just get out of the way cause they are not feeling good but everyone's excited," said volunteer Leael McKay.