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Changes To White Rock Marathon Have Mixed Reviews

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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - What’s in a name? For Bill Marshall, there’s a lot in a name. Marshall has run nearly a dozen White Rock Marathons.”It always runs around White Rock Lake. It’s just an obvious choice to be called the White Rock Marathon, said Marshall. “It’s the jewel of Dallas.”

Steve DeWolf has also run the marathon and lives near White Rock Lake. Although the newly-named Dallas Marathon will still circle the lake, DeWolf says losing the name is like losing a bit of your identity. “It was a great name. I just hate to see the name change,” DeWolf added.

The Fair Park neighborhood is losing more than  just a name. For the past two years, the race has started and ended in Fair Park, drawing an estimated 100,000 runners and spectators to the neighborhood.

“Behind Texas-OU, the White Rock Marathon is one of my biggest days of the year,” explained Mo Michele, manager of Exposition Park Pizza.

Starting in 2012, Fair Park will no longer be included in the route. “This area is struggling so hard to make a comeback,” said Michele. “Every time they pull another event, it just makes it that much harder to keep this comeback going,” she added.

One neighborhood’s loss seems to be another’s gain. The new route will wind through parts of West Dallas and over the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge.

Karen Schultz owns the Foundry and says it’s a sign that West Dallas is on the rise. “I think we’re just excited to be welcomed and acknowledged as a vital part of Dallas,” said Schultz.

The new Dallas Marathon will focus heavily on downtown. The race will start and end near the new convention center hotel.

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