By Bess Casserleigh, Reporter


A booming cannon started hundreds of half-marathon racers off at Jones Park early Sunday morning. People from all over the country convened on the coast this weekend to participate in its first-ever marathon race to take place on Hwy. 90.

"It's just for the fun, the fellowship, and of course the bling," said Brookhaven resident Tim Alexander, who ran both the half marathon and the 5K race on Saturday. "Perfect weather, just great participation from everybody. I had a great time. Just really a good race."

Unseasonably cold temperatures in the 30's greeted runners at the start of the race but the day quickly warmed up as the sun came out.

"The sun coming up on the beach was great this morning. It felt really good outside," said Ivy Prudhomme of Baton Rouge. "It was cold but the weather really played well in to my run."

The Louisiana resident has been training for this race for about a year. 

"It was great," she added. "It was my first half and I felt really proud that I was able to accomplish it."

CLICK HERE to view gallery of race photos

Runners ran the 13.1 mile stretch from Jones Park in Gulfport to MGM park in Biloxi, a distance that usually takes around two hours to complete. All along the way, family and friends were there to cheer them on.

Whit Adams traveled with his family from Jackson.

"I'm here to support my daughter as she is running a marathon," he said, adding that it's something she does a lot.

Dawn Larison came all the way from Syracuse, NY to support her husband, who is running in the race as part of his bucket list.

"I'm really proud of him that he gets himself geared up to do this, training," said Larison. "Actually, we were in Tallahassee for a cross country national race yesterday and his team took fourth."

Runners finished the race inside MGM Park, where they were greeted by their families, live music and of course, food. 

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