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Contact(s):Amanda M. Richardson |

Monday, February 17, 2014

Little Rock Marathon Enhances Security in Preparation for 12th Annual Events

Little Rock Marathon Executive Director: “We continually look for ways to enhance our security plan for the safety of participants, spectators, and all involved.”

(Little Rock, Ark. – February 17, 2014) - In an effort to ensure safe, secure and enjoyable events for participants, volunteers and spectators, the Little Rock Marathon weekend, presented by the Arkansas Democrat Gazette, has enhanced the security plan for its 12th annual events which will take place on March 1 – 2, 2014.

“Over the years, we have assembled a unified front consisting of Little Rock Police and Fire personnel, local, state and federal law enforcement, medical staff, and volunteers,” said Gina Marchese Pharis, Co-Executive Director. “Every year new challenges arise and we continually look for ways to enhance our security plan for the safety of participants, spectators, and all involved.”

According to Pharis, everything from strollers to bag packs and large purses are subject to search. Pharis encourages participants and spectators who plan to attend this year's events "leave valuables, back packs and larger bags at home for the most seamless crowd-friendly experience while on the grounds of our athlete’s village.” She encourages participants to only bring their race-issued gear check bags. Fifteen thousand athletes are expected to participate in this year’s event.

Although numerous precautions are taken each year to protect those present for race weekend, the Little Rock Marathon has made a few key enhancements for 2014.

These include:

  • All bags are subject to search in all race areas and along the course. Thus, backpacks are highly discouraged. 
  • The official Little Rock Marathon Gear Check Bag (sponsored by the Arkansas Governor’s Council on Fitness and Snap Fitness), which was given to the participant at packet pick up, will be the only bags accepted at Gear Check.
  • Many areas will be limited to participant and staff only.  These areas include the start line, sidewalks leading up to the start corrals, the finish line and finisher recover area.
  • There will be no “family run-in” at the finish line.  Only athletes are permitted on the race course, including crossing the Finish Line.
Enhanced security plans have been communicated with race participants through final instructions and emails, and again on race day with signage at all race venues.

For more information about the 2014 events, please visit


About Little Rock Parks & Recreation
Little Rock Parks and Recreation oversees 60 developed parks and twelve undeveloped parks totaling over 6,100 acres. In addition, the Little Rock Parks & Recreation offers a wide-range of youth and adult recreational and sports leagues, after-school and summer playground programs for children ages 6-15, outdoor recreation, therapeutic recreation and programs for seniors. Funds raised will continue to support parks and recreational programs for all ages. For more information about Little Rock Parks & Recreation please visit

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