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Defiant Run Planning ‘coming along nicely’

The Selma Times-Journal

Defiant Run organizer Frank Hardy said plans for the third annual half marathon and obstacle course are coming along nicely.

A group of seven gathered for a roundtable discussion about the 13.1mile race Thursday night at the Carl C. Morgan Convention Center.

Event organizers are holding bi-weekly meetings until the race begins Mar. 18.

The public is welcome.

The Defiant Run will be a three-day event this year, Hardy said. Plans are underway for a Community Inter-faith Prayer Breakfast prior to the race on Mar. 16 at the Convention Center. Tina Price of the Selma and Dallas County Centre for Commerce and James Perkins Sr. willingly volunteered to oversee the event.

Community members also signed on to plan a panel discussion on diversity the night before the race, Mar. 17. Following the race, a “Grammy Awards-like” ceremony is scheduled to “recognize outstanding people that promote diversity and unity” in the community. Denise Dukes, executive director of the Larry D. Striplin Performing Arts Center, has volunteered to oversee the ceremony.

Bruce Taylor of Taylor Internal Medicine of Selma has agreed to co-sponsor a health fair and provide t-shirts the day of

the race.

Pastor Joseph C. Spears of Wayman Chapel A.M.E. Church has teamed up with the Selma Police Department to map out the 13.1 mile as well as the 3.1 mile (5K) “fun run” courses.

Hardy said residents are welcome to pitch in anytime.

“I need to continue to delegate the responsibility,” he said.

The Defiant Run is an “event designed to promote unity and a respect for diversity in a part of the world that has historically been divided among racial lines.” Two people of different ethnic backgrounds are linked together to complete the race, encouraging teamwork.

Hardy said 100 people have registered for the race thus far, some hailing from Tennessee, the Carolinas, Minnesota and Vermont. Hardy is looking to boost community participation by visiting area churches, schools and organizations.

For more information on the Defiant Run, call 872-0426 or visit www.defiantrun.com.